- Niagara Region to receive $21.2 million in broadband upgrades to support four fibre-to-the-home projects.
- The newly announced projects will collectively service 396 kilometres of underserved roadway within the region to bring better broadband connectivity to 5,629 households and businesses.
(Niagara, ON) January 27, 2021 – Today Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT) announced it has awarded funding to expand access to high-speed fibre-optic broadband service to 5,629 households and businesses in the Niagara Region.
“Connectivity is key to the economic success of our region and SWIFT continues to deliver on it’s commitment to increase access to high-speed internet across Southwestern Ontario,” said David Mayberry, SWIFT Board Chair. “The $21.2 million broadband investment announced today will further support online learning, increase work-from-home opportunities and unlock greater economic growth potential for businesses throughout the Niagara region.”
“Access to high-speed internet is essential to the economic growth and prosperity of our region,” said Niagara Regional Chair Jim Bradley. “We are pleased to be working with SWIFT in our efforts to expand high-speed broadband services throughout our underserved communities. With the investments announced today an additional 5,600 homes and businesses across Niagara region will soon have access to fast, reliable internet connectivity.”
SWIFT has awarded $8.8 million in federal and provincial funding to service 396 kilometres of underserved roadways throughout the Niagara Region. In total the Region will receive $21.2 million in broadband upgrades, including nearly $12.4 million in contributions from the internet service providers.
- Bell Canada has been awarded funding to support two fibre-to-the-home projects. The newly awarded projects will collectively service more than 271 kilometres of underserved roadway to bring high-speed internet access to 4,248 homes and businesses throughout Niagara Falls, Port Colborne, Fort Erie, Lincoln, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Pelham, Wainfleet and West Lincoln. The projects represent a collective total investment of $12.8 million and will be completed with service available by mid-2022.
- Cogeco Communications will receive funding to deploy fibre-optic cabling along more than 53 kilometres of underserviced roads within Grimsby and West Lincoln. The $3.3 million fibre-to-the-home network will deliver high-speed connectivity to 755 households and businesses by late-2022.
- Niagara Regional Broadband Network Limited (NRBN) was awarded a contract to deploy fibre-optic cabling along more than 71 kilometres of underserviced roads within Pelham and Wainfleet. The $5 million fibre-to-the-home solution will deliver high-speed connectivity to 626 households and businesses by late-2022.
Today’s newly announced projects are part of SWIFT’s $209 million broadband expansion plan that aims to bring better broadband access to approximately 50,000 underserved homes and businesses across Southwestern Ontario.
“NRBN is happy to be working with SWIFT to continue the expansion of our fibre optic network throughout the Niagara Region. NRBN has been providing essential network connectivity to the main institutions of Niagara since 2004. NRBN being Municipally owned and community focused, started providing fibre-to-the-home Internet to underserviced communities in Niagara over the past few years. Reliable Internet connectivity has proven to be vital to all residents during the unprecedented events of this past year. This project completely aligns with our goals and we are pleased to be participating and providing more high-quality fibre Internet services to communities in need of better bandwidth.”
– Geoff Heinen, President, NRBN
“More than 750 homes and businesses will now be able to benefit from our High-Speed Internet services. We are very happy to participate with SWIFT on this project in the Township of West Lincoln, and the Town of Grimsby. Cogeco is committed to connecting unserved and underserved Ontarians and we are proud to contribute to the reduction of the digital gap between rural and urban areas in Canada and to foster economic recovery.”
– Matt Wickham, Vice-President and General Manager, Ontario Region, Cogeco Connexion
“The SWIFT project, with support from Niagara Region, has been very successful in delivering broadband to under serviced areas of Ontario. As it is now Niagara’s turn, I am pleased we are delivering through these RFP processes 396 kilometres of fibre optic cabling to bring increase access to high-speed internet services to all corners of our Region. On a personal level, I am very pleased to have been part of this process.”
– Robert Foster, Niagara Regional Councillor and SWIFT Board Member
Niagara Region Project Overview
Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT) is a non-profit regional broadband project initiated by the Western Ontario Wardens’ Caucus to subsidize the construction of high-speed broadband networks across Southwestern Ontario, Caledon and the Niagara Region.
The project was approved for funding up to $127.4 million under the New Building Canada Fund – Small Communities Fund (NBCF-SCF), a joint federal and provincial infrastructure funding program, and leverages additional funding from municipal partners and private sector investors to bring the total project investment to $209 million to improve access to broadband services across the region.
Manager, Communications and Stakeholder Relations
Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology