RED LAKE – TECH – With an investment of more than $2.3 million through the province’s Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC), the Chukuni Communities Development Corporation is undertaking a project to improve Internet and broadband Ethernet services in the Dryden, Kenora and Red Lake areas, including Sioux Lookout, Pickle Lake, Machin, Ignace, Sioux Narrows-Nestor Falls and Ear Falls. The improvements will include upgrading existing telecommunications infrastructure and installing additional fibre and networking equipment for improved residential and commercial connectivity.
“Our government is helping ensure Northerners have reliable access to global markets and resources without leaving their communities. Today’s investment in telecommunications infrastructure in Dryden, Kenora and Red Lake will allow businesses in the Northwest to reach new markets, increase revenue and create jobs,” stated Michael Gravelle, Minister of Northern Development and Mines and Chair of the NOHFC.
Better and faster access to the Internet will provide social and economic benefits to residents and businesses.
“Access to modern communications is crucial for maintaining and creating prosperity here in the Municipality of Red Lake and the surrounding areas. I am pleased that the province is able to invest in this project, so that our residents and neighbours will be able to share in the social and economic advantages that this modern digital infrastructure will bring,” said Phillip Vinet, Mayor, Municipality of Red Lake.
Minister Gravelle added, “Improving access to broadband infrastructure is part of the government’s economic plan to build Ontario up and deliver on its number-one priority to grow the economy and create jobs. The four-part plan includes investing in talent and skills, including helping more people get and create the jobs of the future by expanding access to high-quality college and university education. The plan is making the largest investment in public infrastructure in Ontario’s history and investing in a low-carbon economy driven by innovative, high-growth, export-oriented businesses. The plan is also helping working Ontarians achieve a more secure retirement”.
Since 2003, the province has committed more than $1.1 billion through the NOHFC to 7,310 projects, leveraging more than $3.9 billion in direct economic activity and creating or sustaining over 27,000 jobs in Northern Ontario.
- Ontario is making the largest investment in public infrastructure in the province’s history — about $160 billion over 12 years for projects such as roads, bridges, transit systems, schools and hospitals. This investment is supporting 110,000 jobs every year across the province. In 2015, the government announced support for more than 325 projects that will keep people and goods moving, connect communities and improve quality of life.
- Since 2003, the province has invested over $303 million through the NOHFC in 2,040 projects in Northwestern Ontario that have helped generate or retain more than 8,600 jobs.
- Investments in broadband infrastructure are an important part of the Ontario government’s Growth Plan for Northern Ontario.
“This investment from the province will mean better access to all of the social and economic benefits of modern technology for our communities. Essential educational, health, business and social applications will become more accessible and give our residents a chance to share in the benefits of the digital highway,” commented Cathy Quesnel-Loessl, Chukuni Communities Development Corporation.