HAMILTON, Ont. — Bell Canada and the City of Hamilton have announced that they will be moving forward together with a Bell investment of approximately $400 million to expand broadband Internet access in urban and rural areas of Hamilton.
The initiative is billed as the largest digital infrastructure investment in Hamilton’s history.
Bell says over the next five years, it and a Bell-funded team of City of Hamilton staff will bring direct fibre network connections to more than 200,000 homes and business locations throughout the city with zero cost to taxpayers. The network will provide consumers with access to data speeds up to 1.5 gigabits per second, which Bell says are the fastest home Internet speeds in Canada.
In addition, the Bell project includes the expansion of high-speed Internet service to 8,000 homes in rural Hamilton.
Bell says it will work in close cooperation with the city and local contractors, including Aecon, Telecon and Sentrex, to minimize disruption to residents and businesses throughout the project. The majority of the network build will consist of new fibre installed underground, with additional fibre located on Bell, Hydro One and Alectra Utilities poles.
City of Hamilton Mayor Fred Eisenberger said in a statement, “The city is proud to work with Bell to enable its investment in the long-term growth and sustainability of Hamilton as we continue to increase our reliance on digital infrastructure — one of the foundations of our city’s health, growth and prosperity — to attract and grow local businesses and manage our busy lives, now and into the future.”
J. Bruce Furlong, Bell’s senior vice-president of Access Engineering and Deployment, also spoke about the initiative, “Long recognized as one of North America’s top manufacturing centres, the City of Hamilton is also quickly becoming a leader in advanced technology and innovation. Our historic partnership will provide the critical infrastructure necessary to deliver the next generation of communications services to Hamiltonians while accelerating the city’s ongoing digital transformation.”