A joint program between Shaw Communications and the Canadian government will pull 40 km of fibre optic cable between Whistler and Mount Currie to bring high-speed internet access to rural parts of British Columbia, announced Innovation, Science and Economic Development (ISED) in a press release today.
To bring high-quality internet access to Canadians living in the rural west coast, $5.6 million has been raised jointly by the private sector and the Canadian government. Shaw Communications contributed 1.6 million, along with $2 million from the government of Canada’s Connect to Innovate program and $1.9 million from British Columbia’s provincial government.
“The partnerships established by the Connecting British Columbia and Connect to Innovate programs enable critical network investments that provide rural and Indigenous communities with choice and competition in accessing high-speed Internet and other broadband services,” said Paul McAleese, president of Shaw Communications.
The funds will go towards the Whistler-Cache Creek Transport Fibre Build project, which aims to increase connectivity speeds in Mount Currie, Lil’Wat Nation, and Ts’zil Learning Centre. Future development will extend the fibre optic cable line from Whistler to Cache Creek, a linear distance of 139 km.
Anne Kang, British Columbia Minister of Citizen’s Services, noted the importance of closing the digital divide for rural and indigenous communities to help grow businesses and access modern services.
The project is expected to finish in October 2020.