Funding will help connect more than 570 homes, farms and businesses to high-speed internet service
LAMBTON COUNTY – As part of the Ontario government’s plan to connect every community to high speed internet by 2025, more than 570 homes, farms and businesses in Lambton County will have access to high-speed internet service by December 2022, thanks to the construction of a new $6 million infrastructure network in the communities of Wanstead, Rokeby, Walnut and Sutorville.
“The pandemic continues to highlight the need for families, farms and businesses to have access to high-speed internet,” said Irek Kusmierczyk, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion and Member of Parliament for Windsor—Tecumseh, on behalf of the Honourable Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities. “This investment in Lambton County is yet another milestone in our goal of connecting every household and business in Southern Ontario and across Canada to a reliable broadband connection.”
The expanded fibre-optic service is supported by the governments of Canada and Ontario, each committing up to $385,200. The contract to expand broadband services was awarded by Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT) Inc, a not-for-profit corporation, initiated by local municipalities to address connectivity in Southwestern Ontario.
“Our government has made access to high-speed internet a priority for rural Ontario, and we’re delivering on that commitment,” said Lisa Thompson, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. “The pandemic has demonstrated the importance of being connected to high-speed broadband. New connections like these will help families stay in touch, help people access supports they need, while providing a much-needed boost to the local economy. This is the type of critical infrastructure that benefits the entire community.”
"In our modern Ontario, access to reliable, high-speed internet is equally important to rural residents and businesses as it is to those in larger urban centres," said Bob Bailey, MPP Sarnia-Lambton. "I am extremely pleased that this project will bring essential high-speed internet to more than 570 new customers in Lambton County before the year end."
“Today’s announcement is a huge win for residents of Lambton County as we continue working to ensure every home in our community has access to high-speed internet,” said Monte McNaughton, MPP for Lambton-Kent-Middlesex. “This investment means more families can stay connected to their loved ones, and more shopkeepers can connect to the customers they need to grow their businesses.”
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 highly connected digital world, from work, school and socializing, access to fast reliable broadband connectivity is essential for families, local businesses and small-town rural communities,” said Gary McNamara, SWIFT Board Chair. “SWIFT, in partnership with the governments of Ontario and Canada, continues to drive forward with its regional broadband expansion plan to deliver greater connectivity to our region’s underserved communities. With today’s newly established fibre connections in Lambton County we move one step closer to achieving our goal of a more connected Southwestern Ontario where residents and communities can continue to grow and thrive.”