Connection matters. Delivering Internet for Nova Scotians is a priority and we’re making progress. In September 2020, we announced projects that will bring access to 97% of Nova Scotia homes and businesses—good progress, but we are not done. We’ve immediately turned our minds to the people and places that remain underserved. We’re committed to reaching as close to 100% of Nova Scotia homes and businesses as possible.
Providing high-speed internet service to communities across the province has been the priority of the Internet for Nova Scotia Initiative from the beginning.
That is why government invested $193 million to expand internet access and why Develop Nova Scotia continues to advance projects that extend internet networks and service. Today, Nov. 23, Develop Nova Scotia announced a series of scope expansions to existing contracts for Internet for Nova Scotia Initiative projects, which will provide access to an additional 6,700 homes and businesses.
“The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has reinforced the critical importance of access to reliable, high-speed internet for business, education and pleasure,” said Minister of Business Geoff MacLellan. “Across the province, people are working from home, students are learning from home and our small businesses are moving to increase their online presence. These changes have fundamentally changed the way our society operates. Equitable access to Internet is more important than it’s ever been.”
Projects associated with these scope expansions will reduce the number of remaining unserved or underserved homes and businesses by over half. By expanding existing projects, Develop Nova Scotia is continuing to accelerate timelines for these homes and businesses to be connected.
These agreements with pre-qualified internet service providers Mainland Telecom and Bell Canada will provide connections to approximately 30 small communities across the province with high-speed internet, at speeds higher than Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) targets. Preparatory and engineering work will begin immediately on the contract extensions, and it is expected all homes and businesses covered by these extensions will have access to improved network by late 2023.
The Nova Scotia Internet Funding Trust is investing $24 million in these projects, with leveraged funds of $9 million from other levels of government and the private sector.
For full details on these scope expansion projects click here.
For a breakdown of communities, partners, and access to connection numbers visit https://internet.buildns.ca
- since the first Internet for Nova Scotia Initiative projects were announced in February 2020, approximately 21-22,000 of a total of 81,500 homes and businesses already have the network in place to provide new or improved high-speed internet, and providers are working to make those connections as quickly as possible
- projects are being implemented on average 50 per cent faster on almost every step of the process when compared to industry standards
- the total investment of $134 million by the province through the Nova Scotia Internet Funding Trust has leveraged $129 million of additional funding to date, of which $111 million is from the private sector
- all projects approved to date for funding by the trust provide at least target speeds required by the CRTC (50 Mbps down/10 Mbps up for wired, 25 Mbps down/5 Mbps up for wireless, with a demonstrated plan to reach 50 Mbps)