Eight Niagara Region municipalities to have high-speed internet within a year

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Published December 17, 2021 at 11:33 am

More than 4,800 homes, farms and businesses in Fort Erie, Grimsby, Lincoln, West Lincoln, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Niagara Falls, Pelham and Wainfleet will find themselves with high-speed internet service by this time next year.

Both Conservative Sam Oosterhoff, MPP for Niagara West, and Liberal Vance Badawey, MP for Niagara Centre were on hand for the announcement in Fenwick (Pelham) because the expanded fibre-optic service is supported by the governments of Canada and Ontario with each committing millions of dollars.

As well, the eight smaller communities getting the high-speed internet service are mostly in both their separate ridings.

The contracts to expand broadband services were awarded by Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT), a not-for-profit corporation, initiated by local municipalities to address connectivity in unserved and underserved areas of Southwestern Ontario.

“Since first being elected, I promised to advocate for investments in rural broadband,” said Oosterhoff. “The commitment today to expand broadband Internet in Fort Erie, Grimsby, Lincoln, West Lincoln, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Niagara Falls, Pelham and Wainfleet, will soon connect more than 4,800 homes, farms and businesses to reliable high-speed Internet services in December 2022.”

With Badawey, his government is, of course, responsible for an entire country, not just Ontario.

“Today’s announcement is a concrete step towards bringing fast, reliable internet to eight additional communities in Niagara, allowing them to have better access to essential services,” Badawey said. “Our government will keep working to connect all Canadians, here in Niagara and across the country, to high-speed Internet.”

More than $255 million has been invested by the Governments of Canada and Ontario and the private sector, to bring high-speed Internet to more than 58,000 households and businesses in Southwestern Ontario through SWIFT.

“In today’s digitally driven economy, having access to high-speed Internet is essential to ensuring future economic growth and development in small-towns and rural communities,” said Gary McNamara, Board Chair of SWIFT.

“We are pleased to mark the start of construction, in partnership with the federal and provincial governments, on three high-speed fibre-optic networks within Niagara, that will deliver improved connectivity to more than 4,880 underserved homes and businesses throughout Fort Erie, Grimsby, Lincoln, West Lincoln, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Niagara Falls, Pelham and Wainfleet.”

For Pelham Mayor Marvin Junkin, the high-speed internet can’t arrive fast enough.”The expansion of high-speed Internet to Fenwick is great news for our local families, farms and businesses,” he said. “I am glad there will be shovels in the ground on this project very soon.”

(At the Pelham announcement yesterday, below, left to right, Pelham Councillor Wayne Olsen, Pelham Mayor Marvin Junkin, Niagara West MPP Sam Oosterhoff, Niagara Regional Councillor Robert Foster and Dr. Tim Nohara, President and CEO of Accipiter Radar Technologies.)

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