“Reliable access to high-speed internet is essential for rural Canadians’ growth and development,” said Arielle Kayabaga, Member of Parliament for London West, on behalf of the Honourable Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities. “Our government’s investment in these broadband infrastructure upgrades will help hundreds of homes, farms, and businesses in Middlesex and Lambton counties access reliable high-speed internet services. Working remotely, studying online, reaching customers, and monitoring crops and livestock are some of the many activities that will be more practical and convenient for residents in the region.”
In Lambton County, both levels of government have each invested more than $741,000 to provide more than 1,000 families, farms and businesses in the communities of Ravenswood, Gustin Grove, Cedar Point, Glendale Beach, Hillsborough Beach and Highland Glen, with access to high-speed internet service.
“Our government is getting it done and delivering on its commitment to provide access to high-speed internet throughout rural Ontario,” said Lisa Thompson, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. “Projects like these in Lambton and Middlesex counties, that connect more communities to high-speed internet, are crucial to building a stronger Ontario. We’re helping families and farmers stay in touch with loved ones, enabling them to access supports, while providing a much-needed boost to the local economy.”
In addition, the governments of Canada and Ontario have also committed $575,000 to provide access to high-speed internet service for more than 290 families, farms and businesses in the communities of Thedford, Springvale, and Jura.
In Middlesex County, both governments are each committing more than $450,000 to support construction of broadband infrastructure to provide access to high-speed internet service for more than 170 families, farms and businesses in the communities of Kerwood, Strathroy and Napperton in the Fall of 2022, and for more than 100 families, farms and businesses in the community of Ballymote by December 2022.
“This is fantastic news and means even more families and businesses in our community can stay connected,” said Monte McNaughton, MPP for Lambton-Kent-Middlesex. “Our government will continue to work every day to bring high-speed internet to every corner of southwestern Ontario.”
Both governments are also committing more than $65,000 each to support construction of infrastructure in Middlesex County, to provide access to high-speed internet for more than 65 families, farms and businesses in rural areas outside of the community of Melrose by May 2023.
The completion of these projects brings Ontario one step closer to delivering on its commitment to connect every community to high-speed internet by 2025, while also building stronger rural communities and laying the foundation for long-term economic growth.
“SWIFT is proud to partner with the federal and provincial governments as we continue to expand broadband service throughout our project’s region,” said Gary McNamara, SWIFT Board Chair. “With new high-speed connections now being made in Lambton County and construction of critical broadband infrastructure continuing to progress in Middlesex County we move one step closer to reaching our goal of a more connected Southwestern Ontario.”
The contracts to expand broadband services in Lambton and Middlesex counties were awarded by Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT) Inc, a not-for-profit corporation initiated by local municipalities to address connectivity in Southwestern Ontario.