Given our dependence on the internet, high-speed connections are no longer a luxury, but a necessity for not only businesses but the online pace of many peoples’ lives. The coronavirus pandemic only accelerated that trend, with many of us working from home or relying on technology to help us cope with the lockdown.
There are many projects ongoing in the Waterloo Region and surrounding areas which are dedicated to bringing better service to the community. Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT) is just one of the groups working with government officials hoping to bring stronger internet connections to the region and there many more are in the works as well.
In Crosshill, it’s Mornington Communications that’s looking to expand the service.
Through their Fibre to the Home initiative, Mornington will be bringing fibre optic internet with some of the fastest speeds in the country to the area. Earlier this year the company won a bid to bring service to the township office. As a result of this, 65 homes and businesses will also be able to access this service, gaining the ability to see speeds up to one gigabit – 100 times what’s currently available in the area.
“Internet is the way people transact now, of course, and they need to have a good bandwidth to be able to do everything that the internet now has. In the early days, dial-up was fine, because you just load a page of text, read it, and then [load the] next page, read it. Slow speeds were not a factor [back then]. But now that people are streaming videos, online gaming, [for example] design firms that have large graphic files have to transport back and forth. You have to have good bandwidth and fibre is the best technology out there to deliver that,” said Ken Naylor, general manager at Mornington Communications. “We did a couple projects already in Wellesley Township – we went to Linwood and Hawkesville. They have a need for better internet services at their township office, which is based in Crosshill, so we’ve been looking at different ways to get the service through some form of subsidy program but ultimately, the township decided they just had to make a move in and [went ahead].”
Naylor says the community is very underserved in terms of internet quality, a shortcoming that is addressed with the extension of fibre optic connections.
In 2018 the company pitched a $100,000 project to council that would have brought fibre internet to four areas of the township. While it ultimately passed at the time, council decided now is the time to bring Mornington onboard.
Township offices will see internet connected later this year, and 2021 is when residents and businesses can expect service to come to them.
Naylor says when the cables are being run, residents will have the option for a connection to be made to their homes and businesses for free – with no obligation to take on their services at a later date. That will allow them to gain access to the fibre optic internet when it becomes available later on.
Cables are expected to be run before inclement weather comes; those interested are encouraged to look for Mornington employees or contact the company if they wish to take advantage of the free hookup offer.