People and businesses in rural and remote communities around Enderby now have access to high-speed internet service.
“Thousands of households in the north Okanagan will now be able to access faster broadband internet speeds thanks to upgrades to infrastructure,” said Lisa Beare, Minister of Citizens’ Services. “Investing in connectivity infrastructure upgrades for rural and remote communities ensures people and businesses have the tools to stay connected, work, learn and compete in the local and global economy.”
New “last-mile” fixed wireless infrastructure for high-speed connectivity was installed in Armstrong, Enderby, Hullcar, Grindrod and the rural areas surrounding Enderby and Armstrong.
The installation of upgraded last-mile infrastructure will allow the service provider to offer access to broadband internet speeds of at least 50 megabits per second (Mbps) for downloads and 10 Mbps for uploads to more than 2,300 households.
“Connectivity has the ability to raise us all up by helping people connect and collaborate with each other, create and expand local economies or serve as a conduit to essential services like virtual medical visits or online learning,” said Roly Russell, Parliamentary Secretary for Rural Development. “We will continue to work with smaller, rural communities until everyone in the province is connected.”
The Province invested as much as $65,000 through the Connecting British Columbia program, administered by the Northern Development Initiative Trust. The investment went toward the total cost of the infrastructure upgrade anticipated to be approximately $146,000. The Province’s investment was matched with up to $65,000 in federal funding. The remaining cost, to a maximum of $14,600, was contributed by Kelowna-based internet service provider ispeed Communications.
“We are pleased to have received assistance from the federal and B.C. governments to provide speeds of 50/10 Mbps with no data caps,” said Dave Bradich, president, ispeed Communications. “This allows customers to remotely do schooling, work and even access health care. The benefits of high-speed internet to rural communities are incalculable.”
The Province’s investment toward these service upgrade projects is part of the StrongerBC initiative under B.C.’s Economic Recovery Plan to protect people’s health and livelihoods while supporting businesses and communities.
Connectivity in B.C.: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/governments/connectivity-in-bc
Northern Development Initiative Trust: https://www.northerndevelopment.bc.ca/funding-programs/partner-programs/connecting-british-columbia/
StrongerBC: BC's Economic Plan: https://strongerbc.ca/plan