SWIFT is funding the construction of #broadbandforeveryone…
In 2016, SWIFT received a $180 million combined investment from Governments of Canada and Ontario. Within a year, we pre-qualified 28 service providers who will be eligible to bid on building our revolutionary network and by 18-months post-funding, we had released our first bidding opportunity to those providers.
We anticipate releasing our final network design later this year and by early 2019, we will begin the process of investing nearly $300 million to connect almost 3.5 million people – or 10% of Canada’s population! – across an area nine times the size of Prince Edward Island.
We’ve added new partners and members over the last several months, further increasing our market influence and strengthening our collaborative approach to addressing our region’s critical connectivity challenges. As the largest publicly funded regional broadband initiative in Canada to-date, SWIFT is a game changer that will support our region to connect and compete in the digital economy.
As we work toward our first set of milestones, we’ll be following our commitments to stay open and transparent. Read our latest FAQ update to learn more about what’s happening now and make sure to sign up for our newsletter to stay informed about every exciting step forward for SWIFT.
Check back frequently for more information about how and when we’ll build #broadbandforeveryone and connect over 350 communities and more than 3.5 million Ontarians.
To learn more about SWIFT, please watch our YouTube video.
What is SWIFT?
The SouthWestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT) Network is a forward-looking, financially sustainable plan to help the region connect, compete and keep pace in a digital world by building a holistic, ultra-high-speed fibre optic network across the region. Spearheaded by community and businesses leaders across southwestern Ontario, Caledon, and Niagara Region, SWIFT will build an ultra-high-speed fibre optic regional broadband network for everyone. Regardless of the size of your community, your age, education, or where you work, you deserve affordable access to high-speed broadband – and SWIFT is working to build and deliver critical infrastructure to our communities by connecting over 350 communities across 41,286 km2 through 3000 Points of Presence. The project was initiated by the Western Ontario Wardens’ Caucus (WOWC) in 2011 and became incorporated as a non-profit, SWIFT Inc., in 2016.
As we begin the next phases of our project, we remain anchored by our guiding principles and are motivated by our bold new vision:
To empower communities to access global opportunities through local, ultra-high-speed connections.
Who does SWIFT represent?
SWIFT represents the combined connectivity interests of 15 rural municipalities in southwestern Ontario, as well as the Town of Caledon, City of Orillia, and Niagara Region.
The SWIFT network also includes the City of Orillia, Town of Caledon, and the Region of Niagara as municipal partners. Additionally, Grey Bruce Health Services, Georgian College, and the Stratford Economic Enterprise Development (SEED) Corporation are non-municipal members. First Nations supporters include the Southern First Nations Secretariat, the Chippewas of the Thames First Nation, the Chippewas of Kettle and Stony Point, and Walpole Island First Nation. We are pleased to have the support of the federal and provincial governments.
Partners in the SWIFT initiative recognize that working with the community to bring fibre-optic connectivity to every citizen, farm, business, and organization is critical to our region’s prosperity.
Complete organizational design, business plan, and funding in 2016.
RFPQ released May 2017. Shortlist released July 2017. RFP for first phase of network construction released January 2018.
Final plan to be released and construction to begin Spring 2019.
Complete initial construction and connect communities. First phase of network build to occur 2018-2022.
- Internet transit to major Internet Exchange Points in Toronto, St. Catharines, and Windsor for faster and affordable Internet
- Fibre optic connectivity accessible to 3.5 million people across 41,286 km2
- Funding through various levels of government: $180 million in Federal and Provincial funds; $90 million from the private sector/municipal funding, and $18 million from municipalities and other supporters
- Total cost of Phase 1: $288 million
We want to hear from you! Help make high-speed internet access a reality for everyone by expressing your support and staying informed. Sign up for our email newsletter to the right or follow us on Facebook & Twitter to stay in the loop.
You can also reach us by phone at 519-914-1308 to learn more about SWIFT and how we’re funding the construction of broadband for everyone in southwestern Ontario, Caledon, and Niagara Region.
Want to get in touch fast? Click the email icon to open a general inquiry email in a new window and send us a note now.