Dufferin County next up for access to increased broadband internet

Dufferin County next up for access to increased broadband internet
Apr 21, 2022

Along with Dufferin County set to receive expanded broadband internet service, OMAFRA announced the completion of the infrastructure construction for Mansfield.

By Andrew Joseph, Farms.com; Image via Matthew Smith on www.unsplash.com

April 20, 2022, was a busy day for OMAFRA (Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs).

OMAFRA first announced that the Ontario counties of Brant, Perth, and Middlesex were all set to receive better broadband internet access, before closing the day with the news that Dufferin County was also joining in on the good news.

The Dufferin County news will, when completed in November of 2022, connect over 640 homes, businesses, and farms, helping more rural Ontarians benefit from high-speed internet. The governments of Canada and Ontario are investing more than $2.3 million to expand broadband in Dufferin County.  

The Dufferin County access will help 640 farms, businesses, and homes in the communities of Redickville, Honeywood, Black Bank, Ruskview, Terra Nova, Kilgorie, Horning’s Mills, Whitfield, and Springwater Lakes.

OMAFRA also revealed that via its partnership with the government of Canada and Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT) Inc., that construction on a broadband network has been completed in Mansfield, Ontario (also of Dufferin County), to provide reliable high-speed internet service connecting over 300 homes, businesses, and farms.

“A fast and reliable internet connection is vital to the growth and prosperity of all Canadian communities, including rural communities across southwestern Ontario,” said Adam van Koeverden, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Sport and Member of Parliament for Milton, on behalf of the Honourable Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities. “Our government is working with the Government of Ontario to provide the residents of Mansfield with enhanced internet access, connecting hundreds of homes, farms, and businesses with loved ones, customers, essential services, and the world.”

Randy Pettapiece, Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs noted: “Our government is getting it done and delivering on its commitment to provide access to high-speed internet throughout rural Ontario.”
Continuing, Pettapiece added, “Building new broadband infrastructure in Dufferin County will help build Ontario and strengthen rural communities by helping people stay in touch with loved ones, enabling them to access the supports they need while providing a much-needed boost to the local economy.”

These projects bring the Ontario government one step closer to delivering on its commitment to connect every community to high-speed internet by 2025, while also helping to create stronger rural communities, and laying the foundation for long-term economic growth.

“Today’s broadband expansion announcement is excellent news for the people in Dufferin – Caledon,” said Sylvia Jones, MPP for Dufferin - Caledon. “I know firsthand how important high-speed internet access is for families and businesses in our community and throughout rural Ontario. They need these services to do their work - whether it’s schoolwork or running a business. Our government is getting it done, and I am very proud to see this critical infrastructure project coming to a realization here in Mansfield.”

The contract to expand broadband services in Dufferin County was awarded by SWIFT, a not-for-profit corporation, initiated by local municipalities to address connectivity in southwestern Ontario. Over $255 million has been invested by both the governments of Canada and Ontario and the private sector to bring highspeed internet to more than 63,000 rural households and businesses in southwestern Ontario by the end of 2025.

“Access to fast, reliable connectivity in the home has become essential for residents and with the support of our provincial and federal governments, SWIFT in partnership with local and regional service providers are making strong progress in the expansion of high-speed internet service throughout southwestern Ontario’s underserved communities,” said Gary McNamara, SWIFT Board Chair. “As we respond to the need for greater connectivity across our region, today’s announcement marks yet another step forward in making broadband more accessible for students, families, and businesses throughout Dufferin County.”

The governments of Canada and Ontario are each contributing over $63 million to SWIFT through the New Building Canada Fund’s ProvincialTerritorial Infrastructure Component – Small Communities Fund of the Investing in Canada plan.

Ontario is also committing nearly $4-billion in broadband infrastructure to connect every region of the province with access to highspeed internet by the end of 2025. This proactive approach is the largest single investment in high-speed internet, in any province, in Canadian history.

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