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article imageCanadian gov't announces funding for northern Internet loop

By Lisa Cumming     Jun 20, 2018 in Technology
The Government of Canada, the Government of Yukon and Northwestel, a local exchange and long distance carrier in the North, have announced total investments of "up to $79 million" to build a fibre line to connect Yukon and the Northwest Territories.
Funding from the three partners, according to a press release from the Government of Canada, "will be used to build a 777-kilometre-long fibre network between Dawson City, Yukon, and Inuvik, Northwest Territories." This new line is being built strategically to help close the 4,000-kilometre-long Canada North Fibre Loop, in an effort to reduce Internet service interruptions in the region.
A map released in 2015, when the Canada North Fibre Loop was announced, calls the line that connects Dawson City and Inuvik the "Dempster Highway Fibre Line."
In May of last year it was reported that estimated costs to build the 777-kilometre-long line soared, with the most recent estimate sitting around $80 million.
The federal government by way of Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada plans to invest "up to $30 million" through Connect to Innovate, a $500 million federal program that is building high-speed networks around the country. The federal government is also, through Infrastructure Canada, investing "up to $29 million" through the Small Communities Fund. The Government of Yukon has pledged to "invest up to $5 million" and Northwestel plans to invest "up to $15 million."
There's no telling how much funding the project will receive in actuality, given the language around the money pledged.
This comes after the federal government announced in May that, through Connect to Innovate, they would be investing $4.6 million to bring "new or improved" high-speed Internet to nine remote Indigenous communities in the Northwest Territories and Yukon.
More about Canada, Yukon, Internet, Nwt, Bc
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