- More than 12,700 households and businesses, approximately 31,750 residents, across Simcoe County to see improvements in broadband internet services.
- Simcoe County will receive $41.1 million in broadband upgrades.
- As a result of SWIFT’s competitive tendering process, the total County project value increased by 47%, delivering an additional $13 million in infrastructure investments.
- The newly announced projects will collectively service approximately 500 kilometres of roadway across 60 communities within Simcoe County.
(Simcoe County, ON) December 11, 2020 – Today Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT) proudly announced it has awarded funding to support six fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) projects across Simcoe County to expand broadband services to 12,700 households and businesses.
“Today’s announcement is a major achievement for the program, our partners and the residents of Simcoe County, as the newly awarded projects surpassed all of our expected outcomes, including more fibre installed, far more premises passed and overall delivering a much larger broadband investment in the County than originally anticipated,” said David Mayberry, SWIFT Board Chair. “SWIFT is making strong progress in the expansion of broadband services across Southwestern Ontario. With the infrastructure investment made today, approximately 31,750 more residents will soon have greater access to high-speed services.”
“Today’s announcement highlighting the outcome of SWIFT’s Simcoe County procurement process is great news for our residents and businesses. As a region with a diverse range of rural and urban communities, access to reliable, high-speed connectivity is essential. This need has grown throughout the pandemic as many of our businesses and residents now operate and work through virtual environments, while our welcoming communities continue to grow. County Council has been supportive of SWIFT through funding and advocacy efforts, and we’re grateful to the Federal and Provincial governments, as well as our future private-sector partners, for investing in Simcoe County,” said Simcoe County Warden George Cornell.
SWIFT has awarded over $18.6 million in federal and provincial funding to service 500 kilometres of underserved roadway to connect more than 60 communities to fast, reliable internet. In total Simcoe County will receive $41.1 million in broadband upgrades, including more than $22.5 million in contributions from the internet service providers.
“Service providers have demonstrated a strong interest in the program and in doing so, SWIFT has been able to leverage available funding to drive greater connectivity across our region,” said Barry Field, Executive Director, SWIFT. “The outcomes from our Simcoe County procurement far exceeded expectations, with the total County project value increasing by 47%, resulting in an additional $13 million in broadband upgrades. These investments will provide more than 12,700 underserved households and businesses with access to fibre-to-the-home connections that will deliver long-term sustainable broadband solutions for generations to come.”
- Bell Canada has been awarded funding to support three fibre-to-the-home projects. The newly awarded projects will collectively service 389 kilometres of underserved roadway to bring high-speed internet to 10,604 homes and businesses throughout the Townships of Clearview, Adjala-Tosorontio, Essa, Springwater, Oro-Medonte, Tiny, Tay, Severn, Ramara and within the Towns of Midland, Penetanguishene and Innisfil. The projects represent a collective total investment of approximately $32 million and will be completed with service available by mid-2022.
- SWIFT has signed an agreement with Vianet to deploy fibre cabling along more than 73 kilometres of underserved roadway throughout the Towns of New Tecumseth and Bradford West Gwillimbury and within the Township of Adjala-Tosorontio to deliver high-speed internet to 1,207 businesses and homes. Construction of the $5.8 million fibre-to-the-home solution is expected to be completed with service available early-2022.
- Cogeco Communications will receive funding to deploy fibre-optic cabling along 19 kilometres of underserviced roads within the Township of Severn. The $1.5 million fibre-to-the-home network will deliver high-speed connectivity to 467 households and businesses by late-2022.
- Rogers Communications was awarded a contract to deploy fibre-optic cabling along 15 kilometres of underserviced roads in the Township of Clearview. The $1.8 million fibre-to-the-home solution will deliver high-speed connectivity to 422 households and businesses by early-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.
“Vianet is grateful to receive this funding from SWIFT to continue expanding upon our rural Fibre to the Home (FTTH) networks in Adjala-Tosorontio, New Tecumseth and Bradford-West Gwillumbury. Vianet has been building FTTH networks in rural parts of Simcoe County since 2013. This investment by SWIFT will double the number of rural homes served with FTTH in these three communities over the next 12 months. Thank you SWIFT for speeding up the deployment of rural FTTH in Simcoe County.”
– Brian McCullagh, Director of Business Development, Vianet.
“We are proud to continue our partnership with SWIFT to connect residents in Southwestern Ontario to high-speed Internet. Broadband is the heartbeat of the home and, now more than ever, it is critical that every Canadian, no matter where they live, has access to dependable internet service.”
– Philippe Ollie, President of Southwestern Ontario Region, Rogers Communications
‘We are thrilled to collaborate with SWIFT to improve connectivity in Simcoe County. This announcement is part of our ambition to connect more and more homes and businesses to our best-in-class network. We are proud to continue our market expansion which will help to accelerate the achievement of our common goal of connecting unserved and underserved Ontarians to high speed internet, and ultimately enables economic recovery and more inclusive growth.”
– Matt Wickham, Vice-President and General Manager, Ontario Region, Cogeco Connexion
Simcoe County 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