CAMPBELL RIVER, B.C. – The Strathcona Regional District has launched a new and improved regional broadband service for the region.

The SRD also launched its first corporation, the Strathcona Connected Coast Network, which will develop the $45.5M Connected Coast project in partnership with CityWest, a telecommunications company owned by the City of Prince Rupert.

The Connected Coast project brings new and improved high-speed internet accessibility through a new subsea fibre optic cable and landing sites in 154 rural and remote coastal communities, which include 56 Indigenous communities representing 44 First Nations along the BC coast from Prince Rupert to Haida Gwaii, Vancouver and around Vancouver Island.

Representatives will speak to Vancouver Island communities, First Nations, regional districts, internet service providers and industry spokespeople for project approvals and define needs.

Funding for the Connected Coast project is provided by the federal Connect to Innovate program, Indigenous Services Canada, and the provincial Connecting British Columbia program but the SRD Board also adopted a loan authorization bylaw that will follow a public approval process. The bylaw will enable the SRD Board to borrow for broadband infrastructure projects, if additional funding is needed.

For more information on the Connected Coast project, visit https://connectedcoast.ca.