The Strathcona Regional District’s Connected Coast program is taking a step forward after a contractor was selected to build the undersea network.
Baylink Networks, a Port Coquitlam-based company, was awarded the contract for the SRD and CityWest joint-project, which is to build “the largest undersea networks in Canada,” according to CityWest CEO Stefan Woloszyn.
“With this announcement, we’re taking an exciting next step towards getting fibre in the water and bringing high speed connectivity to communities along coastal British Columbia,” said Woloszyn. “Baylink’s proposal was strong, and the company has the capacity and experience to build Canada’s largest undersea fibre optic network.”
“Both, CityWest and the SRD evaluated all the proposals. Baylink Networks was selected as the successful bidder because they are an experienced company with extensive knowledge in this space,” added Dave Leitch, CAO of Strathcona Regional District.
The project will bring high-speed internet to rural and remote communities along the coast. It will connect communities to the undersea network, which will run from Prince Rupert to Haida Gwaii, down the Sunshine Coast and around Vancouver Island. Over 150 communities will have the opportunity to connect to the network, including 48 Indigenous communities representing 44 First Nations. The project is expected to be complete by the end of 2023.
“We’re excited to be part of the Connected Coast project, connecting remote coastal communities of British Columbia with high-speed internet,” said Darren Dofher, CEO of Baylink Networks. “We look forward to seeing what economies will develop in these communities with state-of-the-art infrastructure and limitless bandwidth. We would like to thank the extended team that worked diligently to get the project underway.”