- Waterloo Region to receive $11.6 million in broadband upgrades to support five fibre-to-the-home projects.
- The newly announced projects will collectively service 130 kilometres of underserved roads within the region to bring better broadband connectivity to more than 1,000 households and businesses.
(Waterloo, ON) December 21, 2020 – Today Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT) announced it has awarded contracts to expand high-speed fibre-optic broadband services to more than 1,000 households and businesses throughout the Region of Waterloo.
“Today we are pleased to announce more than $11.6 million in investments to support the expansion of broadband services in the Region of Waterloo,” said David Mayberry, SWIFT Board Chair. “Once completed the newly announced high-speed networks will provide greater access to fast, reliable internet connectivity, creating greater opportunities for education, employment and economic prosperity within the region.”
“Modern internet infrastructure is more important than ever for all Regional residents,” said Regional Chair Karen Redman. “Whether it’s for a home business, people working at home or online education, increased access to broadband will help with economic recovery now and provide more opportunities for growth into the future.”
SWIFT has awarded $7.8 million in federal and provincial funding to support five fibre-to-the-home projects that will collectively service130 kilometres of rural underserved roadway within the region. In total the Region of Waterloo will receive $11.6 million in broadband upgrades, including more than $3.8 million in contributions from the internet service providers.
“SWIFT continues to drive broadband expansion across Southwestern Ontario,” said Barry Field, Executive Director, SWIFT. “The program is now rolling out projects at an accelerated rate with 80% of the newly announced projects in the Waterloo Region slated to begin construction within the next 4 months.”
- North Frontenac Telephone Corporation Limited (NFTC) has been awarded funding to support two fibre-to-the-home projects. The newly awarded projects will collectively service 103 kilometres of rural roadway throughout the Townships of Woolwich, Wellesley and Wilmot to bring high-speed internet to 647 homes and businesses. The projects represent a collective total investment of approximately $9.2 million and will be completed with service available by mid-2022.
- SWIFT has signed an agreement with Bell Canada to deploy fibre cabling along more than 14 kilometres of underserved roadway within the Township of North Dumfries to deliver high-speed internet to 250 businesses and homes in the communities of Orr’s Lake and Clyde. Construction of the $1.3 million fibre-to-the-home solution is expected to be completed with service available by mid-2022.
- EH!tel Networks will receive funding to deploy fibre-optic cabling along 14 kilometres of underserviced roadways in the Township of Woolwich. The $874,000 fibre-to-the-home network will deliver high-speed connectivity to 92 households and businesses in rural areas surrounding the community of Maryhill by early-2022.
- Rogers Communications was awarded a contract to deploy fibre-optic cabling along 2.1 kilometres of underserviced roadways in the Township of Wilmot. The $300,000 fibre-to-the-home solution will deliver high-speed connectivity to 54 households and businesses in the village of Haysville 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.
“NFTC is very pleased to continue our on-going investment in building fibre optic networks in Waterloo Region. The events of this past year have highlighted the importance of bridging the digital divide between rural and urban areas when it comes to internet access. For well over sixty years, NFTC has provided telecommunication services to rural Ontario subscribers. We are very familiar with the challenges of expanding high speed broadband services in lower populated areas. NFTC is proud to be able to partner with SWIFT to add over 103km of additional fibre networks in Waterloo Region.”
– Grant Roughley, Vice President, NFTC
“With the Provincial and Federal funding, we are very excited to expand the Wellington SWIFT project with 14km of fibre into rural Township of Woolwich. This project will address the large number of service requests received from this community.”
– Antonius Peeters, CEO and President, EH!tel Networks
“Having access to dependable broadband services is important, now more than ever, especially in communities that have had limited options. Through our partnership with SWIFT, we are proud to bring our Ignite services to the residents of Haysville and connect them to next-generation technology now, and in the future.”
– Philippe Oille, President of Southwestern Ontario Region, Rogers Communities
Waterloo 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