- Chatham-Kent to receive $19.3 million in broadband upgrades to bring high-speed services to more than 4,584 households and businesses.
- Awarded projects include expanding high-speed fibre-optic broadband services in Delaware Nation – Moravian of the Thames community.
(Chatham-Kent, ON) February 3, 2021– Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT) today announced it has awarded contracts to expand high-speed fibre-optic broadband services to 4584 households and businesses throughout Chatham-Kent and within Delaware Nation – Moravian of the Thames community.
“In response to the growing need for improved broadband service in the Chatham-Kent area I’m proud to say that with the regional support of our municipal partners and private sector investments more than 4,500 households and businesses will soon have access to fast, reliable high-speed internet,” said David Mayberry, SWIFT Board Chair. “Today’s newly announced broadband investment will bring greater connectivity to further support online learning, increase work-from-home opportunities and unlock greater economic growth potential for businesses throughout the region.”
“This is an amazing day for Chatham-Kent. For a number of years our residents, particularly those in rural areas, have expressed a strong desire for high-speed Internet service. Council has listened and staff has been working behind the scenes with our partners to bring us here,” said Darrin Canniff, Mayor of Chatham-Kent.
“The commitment and contributions of SWIFT, TekSavvy and the Eelŭnaapéewi Lahkéewiit (Delaware Nation) Council has provided an optical fibre foundation for the community’s members and businesses to access broadband services. The ability to navigate the high-speed highways of global information and efficient communications; the ability to access new educational or economic opportunities. This will be a game changer for the Delaware Nation, here at Moraviantown. Especially for our youth, who will be the real benefactors of this technology,” said Chief Denise Stonefish, Delaware Nation – Moravian of the Thames.
SWIFT will leverage $7.4 million in funding contributions made by its member municipalities, including investments from Chatham-Kent, to support the expansion of broadband services throughout the municipality and within Delaware Nation – Moravian of the Thames community. In total the region will receive $19.3 million in broadband upgrades, including more than $11.9 million in contributions from the service providers.
- TekSavvy Solutions has been awarded funding to support three fibre-to-the-home projects. The newly awarded projects will collectively service 99 kilometres of underserved roadway to bring high-speed internet to 1,782 homes and businesses throughout the communities of Mitchell’s Bay, Highgate, Tupperville, Dover Centre, Grande Pointe, Louisville, Kent Bridge, Muirkirk and Duart, as well as in rural areas outside of Wallaceburg, Dresden, Thamesville, Bothwell and Pain Court. The projects represent a collective total investment of approximately $9.2 million and will be completed with service available between late 2021 and early 2022.
- In addition to the newly awarded projects, TekSavvy Solutions was previously awarded a contract to construct a 13 kilometres fibre-optic backbone and feeder network to provide Delaware Nation – Moravian of the Thames community with access to modern broadband infrastructure to enable the First Nation to act as their own internet service provider. Construction of the $700,000 network is now complete and is capable of delivering internet speeds up to 1 gigabit per second to the community.
- SWIFT has signed an agreement with Cogeco Connexion to deploy fibre cabling along more than 115 kilometres of underserved roadway throughout the communities of Erieau, Erie Beach, Dealtown, North Buxton, Charing Cross, Cedar Springs, Shrewsbury, Rondeau Bay Estates, New Scotland, Rondeau Park and Morpeth to deliver high-speed internet to 2,802 businesses and homes. Construction of the $9.4 million fibre-to-the-home solution is expected to be completed with service available early-2023.
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.
“TekSavvy is proud to be awarded these contracts to help build world class fibre-optic networks within our own community. We believe that every Canadian should have access to high-speed broadband services, and this allows us to follow that belief with investment and action.”
– Charlie Burns, Chief Technology Officer at TekSavvy.
“Cogeco is thrilled to once again be partnering with SWIFT to deliver its high-speed internet services to more than 2,800 homes and businesses within the Municipality of Chatham-Kent. We are proud to share the common goals of connecting unserved and underserved Ontarians, and contributing to reduce the digital divide between rural and urban areas in Canada, which are essential in enabling economic recovery.”
– Matt Wickham, Vice-President and General Manager, Ontario Region, Cogeco Connexion
“My family has served and has been part of the rural community for years, so I know how much the expansion of high-speed internet services means. As a member of Chatham-Kent Council and the SWIFT board of directors, I also know how much work has gone into this effort. I look forward with great excitement to seeing this project and others to come materialize. Chatham-Kent has taken a major step today towards serving our rural community.”
– Jamie McGrail, Chatham-Kent Councillor
- SWIFT will leverage $7.4 million in funding contributions made by its member municipalities, including investments from Chatham-Kent, to expand broadband access across the municipality.
- The newly awarded projects will collectively deploy fibre-optic cabling along 227 kilometres of underserved roadway to improve broadband access throughout Chatham-Kent area.
Chatham-Kent 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.
Manager, Communications and Stakeholder Relations
Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology