- SWIFT signs contract with North Frontenac Telephone Company to expand high-speed internet services in London.
- 485 households and businesses to see improvements in broadband services to close the digital divide and support economic development in the region.
- Construction to be completed with service fully available by late-2022.
(London, ON) January 28, 2021 – Today Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT) announced it has signed an agreement with North Frontenac Telephone Company (NFTC) to expand high-speed internet access to 485 underserved homes and businesses within the City of London.
“SWIFT is proud to partner with NFTC to bridge broadband service gaps throughout the City of London,” said David Mayberry, SWIFT Board Chair. “Today’s newly announced $2.7 million project will bring high-speed broadband access to 485 homes and businesses to improve connectivity in underserved areas of the City.”
“We are thrilled to work with Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology and North Frontenac Telephone Company to ensure more Londoners and businesses in underserved broadband internet areas have easy and reliable high-speed internet access,” said London Mayor Ed Holder. “The COVID-19 pandemic has further demonstrated the increasing importance of access to the digital world for all Londoners. Whether its students connecting to online education, businesses adapting their online operations, or residents working from home, broadband internet is an essential infrastructure for the local economy and improved quality of life for residents.”
SWIFT has awarded $1.6 million in funding contributions received from its municipal partners to support the newly awarded project. NFTC has also committed approximately $1.1 million to the $2.7 million joint venture. Using a combination of both fibre and wireless technologies the project aims to bring fast, reliable internet connectivity to the Southend of London by November 2022.
“The rollout of the newly announced project will bring increased access to high-speed service in areas important for London’s economic development. Based on the City’s input this area was prioritized as being in need of greater connectivity,” said Barry Field, Executive Director, SWIFT. “In collaboration with our municipal partners and NFTC we are pleased to be delivering improved and enhanced broadband services in London’s underserved areas to support economic growth and future development.”
“NFTC is proud to be able to partner with SWIFT and the City of London to add over 24km of fibre optic network within the southern portion of the City’s geographic footprint. 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. When this network expansion is complete, residents in these underserved areas will enjoy the same high-speed connectivity available in major urban centres. Remote learning, telecommuting for work as well as the ability to leverage new technologies will become a reliable reality. Businesses will be able to fully leverage digital commerce opportunities. 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 and are excited to have the opportunity to continue our commitment to bringing high speed broadband and telecommunication services to rural Ontario,” said Grant Roughley, Vice President, North Frontenac Telephone Company.
Today’s newly announced project is part of SWIFT’s $209 million Southwestern Ontario broadband expansion plan and is supported by funding contributions received from its municipal partners.
- SWIFT will leverage approximately $1.6 million in funding contributions made by its member municipalities to expand broadband infrastructure along underserviced roadways within the City of London to deliver better connectivity to 485 underserved households and businesses.
City of London 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.
Manager, Communications and Stakeholder Relations
Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology