South Hazelton residents will be able to get highspeed fibre optic internet, TV and phone service as early as the fall.
In a press release June 4, Citywest announced it will be installing cable over the summer. The project is supported by the Northern Development Initiative Trust’s (NDIT) Connecting BC program with the Province funding half the cost of $800,000.
“Bringing reliable, high-speed internet to the people of South Hazelton is another win for rural and remote communities in British Columbia,” said Joel McKay, CEO of NDIT. “This demonstrates the commitment by the Province to not only improve the quality of life for our residents, but to strengthen and diversify the economy.”
Prior to the release, a South Hazelton Facebook group was already abuzz with sightings of Citywest crews doing prep work in the area. Some group members commented they had already signed up.
Anne Kang, B.C.’s Minister of Citizens’ Services said the COVID-19 pandemic has underscored just how important it is to get rural areas connected to highspeed internet.
“It helps us connect with loved ones, she said. “It helps us work remotely. It allows those of us who are in school to continue our studies as we work towards new and exciting careers. Bringing broadband to South Hazelton will make life easier for people in the community and also gives businesses the technology they need to grow and market themselves around the world.”
In response to the pandemic, the company said it has taken measures for construction and will be prepared to ensure customer safety in the fall when home installations begin.
“Our construction team will be practicing all the appropriate COVID-19 social distancing measures to ensure everyone stays safe,” said Bart Kuntz, VP of Outside Plant with CityWest.