Governments of Canada and Alberta invest over $96 million to bring high-speed Internet access to more than 10,000 homes
Rural communities to benefit from increased connectivity to high-speed Internet
July 11, 2023 – Vulcan, Alberta
All Canadians need reliable and affordable high-speed Internet, no matter where they live. That is why the governments of Canada and Alberta are taking action to bring high-speed Internet access to underserved communities across Alberta.
Today, the Honourable Gudie Hutchings, Minister of Rural Economic Development, together with the Honourable Nate Glubish, Alberta’s Minister of Technology and Innovation, announced over $96 million in combined federal and provincial funding for 14 projects to bring high-speed Internet access to more than 10,000 homes in 46 rural and remote communities across Alberta. This includes nearly 2,300 Indigenous households.
The funding is part of an existing agreement between Canada and Alberta. On March 9, 2022, both governments announced a historic partnership to invest up to $780 million to provide high-speed Internet access to Albertans in rural, remote and Indigenous communities. The governments of Canada and Alberta will continue to announce projects selected under this agreement over the coming months.
Today’s announcement builds on the Government of Canada’s progress toward ensuring that 98% of Canadians have access to high-speed Internet by 2026, and 100% by 2030. The announcement also brings the Government of Alberta closer to achieving its goal of bringing reliable high-speed Internet access to every community in the province by the end of the 2026–27 fiscal year.
“We all know that Internet is no longer a luxury—it’s a necessity. That’s why our government made a historic commitment to connect 98% of Canadians to high-speed Internet by 2026. Today’s announcement in Vulcan marks a significant milestone for Internet connectivity in rural Alberta. This investment will provide reliable high-speed Internet access to more than 10,000 underserved homes in 46 rural and remote communities in Alberta.”
– The Honourable Gudie Hutchings, Minister of Rural Economic Development
“This investment will be a game changer for residents in 10,000 homes in rural and remote communities all across Alberta. Access to reliable, high-speed Internet will provide better education, health and economic opportunities and will ensure that rural and Indigenous communities are full partners in Alberta’s growing economy. Investing in rural connectivity is a top priority for Alberta’s government, and we are committed to ensuring that all Albertans, regardless of where they live, have access to reliable, high-speed Internet.”
– The Honourable Nate Glubish, Alberta’s Minister of Technology and Innovation
“Without this important investment from the Universal Broadband Fund and significant investment from Indigenous Services Canada and the Goodstoney Band, Big Horn and the Goodstoney Band members who reside on the reserve would likely have remained unconnected into the foreseeable future due to their remote location. Stoney Nakoda Telecom’s goal is to provide services for all unconnected areas for the benefit of the Bearspaw First Nation, Chiniki First Nation and Goodstoney First Nation membership and is looking forward to building fibre into the Big Horn reserve.”
– Rob Shotclose, CEO, Bearspaw First Nation
“As part of our commitment to fostering digital inclusion, Arrow Technology Group recognizes the crucial role that access to fast and reliable Internet plays in today’s world. With the funding announced today, we will be able to extend our fibre optic infrastructure directly to homes in rural areas, empowering residents with unprecedented connectivity and opening doors to endless possibilities. We extend our gratitude to the Universal Broadband Fund for recognizing the importance of Internet access in rural areas and selecting Arrow Technology Group as one of the recipients of this funding. This partnership allows us to further our mission of creating a more connected and inclusive Alberta. We are excited to begin the work that is needed and bring the future of Internet connectivity to rural communities.”
– Monica Burman, Director of Human Resources, Arrow Technology Group
“TELUS is honoured to partner with the Government of Canada and Government of Alberta to expand access to high-speed broadband for several remote Indigenous communities in northern Alberta. By bringing our world-class PureFibre Internet to these communities, we will unlock new economic and social benefits for generations to come, as we have done for more than 375 rural communities and 166 Indigenous lands across Canada in recent years.”
– Tony Geheran, Executive Vice-President and Chief Operations Officer, TELUS
“The investment in both rural and Indigenous communities is a great step forward in providing opportunities to the residents in these communities to access vital services. Connectivity is an important aspect within our society to overcome the communication, education and social barriers that can be created when access to reliable Internet is not available. We appreciate the recognition from both Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada and the Alberta Government on the importance of this project by allocating funds to facilitate the completion of the fibre to the home project on the Piikani Nation in the community of Brocket. In addition, we thank the community and the community leaders for their support and recognition of the value of providing these services to the community and its residents.”
– Paul McLean, President, Tough Country Communications
Canada’s Connectivity Strategy aims to provide all Canadians with access to Internet speeds of at least 50 megabits per second (Mbps) download / 10 Mbps upload.
The Universal Broadband Fund is a $3.225 billion investment by the Government of Canada designed to help provide high-speed Internet access to 98% of Canadians by 2026 and achieve the national target of 100% access by 2030.
Today, 93.5% of Canadian households have access to high-speed Internet, compared to just 79% in 2014.
The Alberta Broadband Strategy aims to provide every household in Alberta with access to high-speed Internet by the end of the 2026–27 fiscal year.
On March 9, 2022, a Canada-Alberta broadband partnership was announced. Under this agreement, approximately 200,000 households across Alberta will be connected to broadband thanks to an investment of up to $780 million, co-funded equally by both levels of government.
Since 2015, the Government of Canada has invested more than $464 million in connectivity projects in Alberta.
Government of Canada
Office of the Minister of Rural Economic Development
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada
Government of Alberta
Office of the Minister of Technology and Innovation
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