Calling it the biggest investment in high-speed Internet in Canadian history, Infrastructure Ontario said this ambitious goal involves working with the federal government to make it happen.
The provincial government made a promise to connect every Ontarian to broadband and cellular service extended to underserved and unserved communities last fall before presenting its budget in November.
According to a July 16 press release, Infrastructure Ontario will lead a “transparent and competitive” procurement process, which will begin this summer, allowing Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to bid for provincial support through a series. reverse auction events for defined geographic areas, and based on high-speed Internet infrastructure deployment requirements.
“This historic investment of nearly $ 4 billion means every home, community and region in Ontario will have access to high-speed Internet,” Infrastructure Minister Kinga Surma said in a statement.
“Our new approach to sourcing and our transformative investments will help ensure that no one is left behind when it comes to accessing our digital world. No matter where you live, you’ll have access to reliable high-speed internet to work, learn, start a business, access vital services like healthcare, and connect with family and friends.
Depending on the province, 700,000 households in Ontario do not have high-speed Internet access or have no Internet connection.
Last year, the provincial government launched the Improve Connectivity for Ontario (ICON) program, a multi-year program to support high-speed and cellular Internet projects with funding. The approved projects are expected to be announced shortly.
Queen’s Park wanted to accelerate the rollout of broadband projects by introducing the Broadband Support and Infrastructure Expansion Act of 2021 earlier this spring.
Last month, the federal government announced it was spending $ 16 million to provide high-speed Internet to 7,500 homes across Ontario, including the Mindemoya area on Manitoulin Island; the Pointe Louise-Gros Cap area, east of Sault Ste. Married; and the Hagar-Sucker Creek landing zone, east and southeast of Sudbury. This money comes from the federal government’s $ 2.75 billion Universal Broadband Fund.