Improved high-speed Internet comes to Lytton

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LYTTON – Lytton area residents and businesses will be able to access reliable high-speed Internet following the completion of two Lytton Area Wireless Society (Lyttonnet) connectivity projects worth $624,586, which received $244,550 from the Connecting British Columbia program.

Nearly 300 homes and many local companies are now better able to learn, do business, access services and stay connected through Internet speeds comparable with larger urban areas. The projects benefit the Village of Lytton, the Lytton First Nation, rural Lytton, and St. Georges Road.

The projects replaced aging infrastructure with a permanent and more reliable fibre solution and connected homes previously without Internet access because of terrain blocking line of sight connections with wireless towers. They are over 95% complete and should reach full completion before end of January 2017.

Connecting British Columbia is a $10 million grant program funded by the Province and administered by Northern Development Initiative Trust to expand and upgrade broadband connections in rural and remote communities throughout B.C.

The projects were championed by Lyttonnet, a local effort created and maintained by volunteer members of the Lytton Area Wireless Society and other community members.

Lyttonnet has been providing low cost high-speed Internet to Fraser Canyon communities near Lytton for ten years.

Through the #BCTECH Strategy, government’s goal is to see every British Columbian with access to high-speed Internet by the end of 2021. The Province is working with other levels of government and the private sector to make this happen. The #BCTECH Strategy is a key component of the BC Jobs Plan to support the growth of B.C.’s vibrant technology sector and strengthen British Columbia’s diverse innovation economy. The multi-year strategy includes a $100-million BC Tech Fund and initiatives to increase talent development and market access for tech companies that will drive innovation and productivity throughout the province.

Quotes:

Jackie Tegart, MLA for Fraser-Nicola
By investing in high-speed Internet in rural and remote communities like Lytton, we’re making”it possible to provide B.C. residents with improved economic opportunities, access to online Ministry of Technology, Innovation and Citizens’ Services Northern Development Initiative Trust education services and connections with family and friends, regardless of where they live. We rely on service providers like Lyttonnet to connect remote communities in order to reach our goal of providing high-speed Internet access to 100% of British Columbians by end of 2021.”

Evan Saugstad, board chair, Northern Development Initiative Trust
“The Connecting BC project in Lytton is another example of how local economies can be supported. The investment in this infrastructure provides access to new business opportunities, services, education, and ways to connect with family and friends, ultimately strengthening the community through economic diversification and lifestyle enhancements.”

Robert Richards, director, Lytton Area Wireless Society
“Lytton Area Wireless Society is celebrating 10 years of serving our community with high-speed Internet. With the help of the Northern Development Initiative Trust, we have been able to install fibre to the home service to over 280 homes and businesses in our network. The upgrade to fibre-optic service has been much needed to continue to deliver fast, reliable Internet service to our customers as demand for the Internet increases. It is a very exciting time for our small society. It had long been a dream of ours to provide fibre-optic services and now with the Connecting British Columbia grant program and NDIT it is a reality. Thank you NDIT for
helping our small communities have urban Internet.”

Jessoa Lightfoot, mayor, Village of Lytton
“On behalf of the village and surrounding community, I wish to express our appreciation and congratulations to Lyttonnet for their determination and dedication in establishing Internet service for our citizens. Over ten years ago, they invested their personal resources to help establish our wireless Internet. Since then they have continued to work to improve the scope
and range of service. Recent upgrades of fibre cable to the Village of Lytton and surrounding area further enables citizens to have better access to Internet service.”

Steven Rice, director, Thompson-Nicola Regional District
“Lyttonnet is a remarkable illustration of where it can all work when we all work together. Well done! As rural B.C. will always have a new mountain to climb, it is exciting to see Lyttonnet reach the top. Congratulations!”

Janet Webster, Chief, Lytton First Nation
“Lytton First Nation supported the fibre optic to be installed in the Village of Lytton and surrounding First Nations, we are very fortunate to receive newer and faster high-speed Internet services in our small community. Businesses, educational and personal uses at homes will be able to access better services from this project. We, the Lytton First Nation, would like
to thank the Lytton Area Wireless Society (Lyttonnet) and volunteers for their commitment and dedication to the communities of Lytton, for upgrading to a newer and brighter technology that will benefit all.”

Quick Facts:

The Lytton First Nation communities benefitting from improved high-speed Internet access include Tuckozap 24, Klahkamich 17, Klickkumcheen 18, Nuuautin 2A, Nuuautin 2, Nuuautin 2B and Lytton 21A.
To date, more than 33,000 households in over 150 communities will receive expanded high-speed Internet access through the Connecting British Columbia program.
Learn More:

Connecting British Columbia program

Lyttonnet

Northern Development Initiative Trust

Media Contacts:

Joanne Whittier
Ministry of Technology, Innovation and Citizens’ Services
Government Communications and Public Engagement
250-387-0172

Kim Hayhurst
Director, Marketing and Communications
Northern Development Initiative Trust
250-561-2525
kim@northerndevelopment.bc.ca