Canada and Ontario Increasing Access to High-Speed Internet Service in Huron and Bruce Counties

Rural Ontarians benefitting from expanded broadband access

July 14, 2023

Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs

Table of Contents

  1. Content
  2. Quick Facts
  3. Additional Resources
  4. Related Topics

HURON COUNTY – The governments of Canada and Ontario are investing more than $4.5 million to bring reliable high-speed internet to more than 1,770 families, farms, and businesses in Huron and Bruce Counties.

“Providing reliable internet access is especially important for rural communities to prosper in our increasingly digital world,” said Peter Fragiskatos, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue and Member of Parliament for London North Centre, on behalf of the Honourable Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities. “Today’s announcement marks another milestone for homes, businesses, and farms in Huron and Bruce Counties that can now connect to essential online services and enjoy the additional economic opportunities made available through high-speed internet.”

The federal and provincial governments have partnered with Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT) Inc., to provide 720 residents in rural areas near Bluewater Beach and areas south of Benmiller, as well as residents in the communities of Porter’s Hill, Marnoch, and Hutton Heights in Huron County, with access to broadband infrastructure that will enable high-speed internet service. In neighbouring Bruce County, 1,054 residents in the areas of Vesta, Ellengowan, Pinkerton, Eden Grove, Cargill, Dunkeld, Chepstow, Pearl Lake, Maple Hill and Malcolm, also have access to high-speed internet service through SWIFT.

“By continuing to build new broadband infrastructure in Huron and Bruce counties, we’re helping strengthen our local rural communities. This investment is helping to support the growing utilization of real-time data on farm and in our rural businesses, as well as helping people stay in touch with loved ones, enabling them to access the supports they need while proving to be a foundational pillar for economic success across the riding,” said Lisa Thompson, MPP for Huron-Bruce.

Huron County provided an additional investment of more than $1 million to support the project in communities near Bluewater Beach and more than $729,211 to support the project in the communities of Marnoch and Hutton Heights. They also contributed $731,886 to bring connectivity to areas just south of Benmiller.

“Connectivity is key to empowering businesses, strengthening local economies and unlocking new opportunities for innovation and growth in our small and rural communities across Southwestern Ontario,” said Gary McNamara, SWIFT Board Chair. “Together with the governments of Ontario and Canada, SWIFT continues to make strong progress in the expansion of high-speed broadband infrastructure across Southwestern Ontario. Today’s announcement builds on our program’s commitment to drive greater connectivity throughout the region as we mark the successful completion of five additional high-speed broadband projects in the counties of Huron and Bruce.”

This announcement marks the completion of five more projects under SWIFT and builds on the Ontario government’s plan to get the right infrastructure in the right places – ensuring people can live, work, and farm where they want.

The contracts to expand broadband services in Huron and Bruce counties were awarded by SWIFT, a not-for-profit corporation initiated by local municipalities to address connectivity in Southwestern Ontario.

More than $255 million has been invested by the governments of Canada and Ontario and the private sector to bring high-speed internet access to more than 63,000 homes and businesses in Southwestern Ontario through SWIFT.

Quick Facts

  • The governments of Canada and Ontario are each contributing more than $63 million to SWIFT through the New Building Canada Fund’s Provincial-Territorial Infrastructure Component – Small Communities Fund.
  • The Ontario government is investing nearly $4 billion to bring high-speed internet access to every corner of the province by the end of 2025. This is the largest single investment in high-speed internet in Canadian history.
  • In July 2021, the governments of Canada and Ontario announced a historic agreement that will bring high-speed internet access to more than 280,000 Ontario households across the province through a joint investment totaling more than $1.2 billion.
  • Ontario launched a new interactive online map that shows where provincially funded high-speed internet projects are planned, currently under way, or have been recently completed in communities across the province. Ontarians can visit and search by address, community or municipality to find out more about provincially funded high-speed internet projects and where high-speed internet service is currently available.

Additional Resources

Ontario Connects: Making High-speed Internet Accessible in Every Community

Ontario Builds: our infrastructure plan

High-Speed Access for All: Canada’s Connectivity Strategy

Related Topics

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