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High-speed internet coming to Long Point

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The roll-out of high-speed internet continues in under-serviced areas of Norfolk.

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The installation of fibre-optic cable in the Turkey Point-Normandale area should be finished by December, Port Rowan Coun. Tom Masschaele told Norfolk council last week.

Work there is part of the $8.3-million SWIFT initiative in Norfolk County. SWIFT is the acronym for the Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology, a public-private program to extend high-speed internet into rural areas of southern Ontario. Masschaele is Norfolk’s representative on the SWIFT board of directors.

Masschaele also reported that installation is set to begin in Wilsonville and Bloomsburg. He said he expects work in these communities to begin by the end of July.

“There has been some significant progress made by SWIFT on these projects,” said Masschaele, adding cable installation in the Long Point area is slated for October.

Fifteen rural municipalities, associated urban areas, the province of Ontario, the federal government, and other partners have created a $209-million fund under the SWIFT umbrella. The funds will be used to install high-speed fibre-optic cable in under-serviced areas.

The municipalities involved organized several years ago to address the growing disparity in internet service levels between Ontario’s rural and urban areas.

High-speed internet has become an essential economic tool, the availability of which factors high in investment decisions. High-speed infrastructure has also become indispensable to modern farming operations. The availability of reliable, high-speed internet is also a major influence on where individuals and families choose to live.

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