- SWIFT awards funding to support fibre-to-the-home projects in the Townships of Blandford-Blenheim, East Zorra-Tavistock, Norwich, South-West Oxford and Zorra.
- In total Oxford County will receive $9.9 million in broadband upgrades to bring high-speed internet to 1,670 underserved premises.
(Oxford County, ON) October 15, 2020 – Today Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT) announced it has awarded funding to expand fibre-optic broadband services in Oxford County to bring high-speed internet access to 1,670 underserved homes and businesses within the Townships of Blandford-Blenheim, East Zorra-Tavistock, Norwich, South-West Oxford and Zorra.
“Increased access to broadband services is essential for the economic recovery and future growth of our region,” said David Mayberry, SWIFT Board Chair. “The broadband investments being announced today in Oxford County will have long-term positive impacts throughout the County and will further support online learning, increase work-from-home opportunities and unlock greater economic growth potential for businesses.”
SWIFT, in partnership with the Governments of Ontario and Canada, has awarded $5.3 million to support seven fibre-to-the-home projects to bring improved high-speed internet to 22 communities across Oxford County. In total, the County will receive $9.9 million in broadband upgrades, including $4.6 million in contributions from the internet service providers.
“The internet has been a lifeline for many during the COVID-19 pandemic. With more people working and learning from home, the need for reliable high-speed internet has never been greater. We appreciate the efforts of our partners at SWIFT to support the online needs of our families and businesses in Oxford County,” said Oxford County Warden Larry Martin.
SWIFT has signed an agreement with Quadro Communications to deploy fibre cabling along more than 106 kilometres of underserved roadway within the Township of Zorra to deliver high-speed internet to 326 businesses and homes. Construction of the $5.2 million fibre-to-the-home solutions is expected to be completed with service available in late-2022.
“Quadro is pleased to have been awarded this funding from SWIFT, in the County of Oxford, for our Township of Zorra project. It has become imperative that all communities have access to reliable high-speed internet as evidenced by the need for internet services in today’s world. This project when completed will provide the services needed for today and will future proof these customers as requirements change. Quadro is dedicated to continuing our mission by enriching our customers experience with personal service and innovative products,” said John H. DeHeer, General Manager, Quadro Communications.
Rogers Communications will receive funding to deploy fibre-optic cabling along more than 15 kilometres of underserviced roads in the Township of Blandford-Blenheim. The $1.5 million fibre-to-the-home networks will deliver high-speed connectivity to 484 households and businesses by early-2022.
“All Canadians, whether they live in major cities or rural communities, need world-class connectivity now, more than ever,” said Philippe Oille, President of Southwestern Ontario Region, Rogers Communications. “One of the ways that we are helping to make this a reality is through our partnership with SWIFT and we are proud to bring high-speed internet service to Oxford residents and businesses.”
Execulink Telecom has been awarded funding to support five fibre-to-the-home projects. The newly awarded projects will collectively service 68 kilometres of underserved roadway throughout the County to bring high-speed internet to 860 homes and businesses within the Townships of East Zorra-Tavistock, Norwich, South-West Oxford and Zorra. The projects represent a collective total investment of approximately $3.2 million and will be completed with service available between mid-to-late 2022.
“At Execulink, we’re proud to provide the awesome telecom experience our local communities deserve and are grateful to SWIFT for allowing us to expand and enhance the experience for our customers. Reliable, fast Internet has never been more important and, with SWIFT, we’re able to ensure more people have access to the services they need,” said Ian Stevens, President and CEO, Execulink Telecom.
“SWIFT continues to make steady progress in delivering on its commitment to expand broadband availability throughout Southwestern Ontario,” said Barry Field, Executive Director, SWIFT. “From education to health care to attracting next-generation jobs, broadband access is essential. With today’s announcement, $9.9 million in broadband upgrades is being invested into Oxford County to expand high-speed service to support business growth and help communities thrive.”
The 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.
Oxford County 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.
The project was approved for funding up to $127.4 million under the New Building Canada Fund – Small Communities Fund (NBCF-SCF), a joint federal and provincial infrastructure funding program, and leverages additional funding from municipal partners and private sector investors to bring the total project investment to $209 million to improve access to broadband services across the region.
Manager, Communications and Stakeholder Relations
Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology