SaskTel and South Saskatchewan Ready
Partner to Bring infiNET Service to Southern
The partnership between SaskTel and South Saskatchewan Ready (SSR) through SaskTel’s Community Participation program will bring fibre optic broadband internet service to the towns of Bengough, Coronach, Rockglen and Willow Bunch. Pictured Left to Right Mike Ryan, Rockglen Councilor: Dennis Mazenc, Bengough Councilor: Sharon Adam, Chair of SSR and Coronach Councilor: Sean Wallace, SSR Managing Director: Dr Abdul Jalil, Assistant Deputy Minister of Prairies Economic Development Canada: Doug Burnett, Sask Tel President and CEO: Doug Kosloski, Sask Tel Vice President of Corporate Counsel and Regulatory Affairs: and Ron Mamer, Coronach Councilor and Deputy Mayor.
Industries across the province are transforming to meet economic demands, and it’s increasingly apparent that in today’s digital world a reliable broadband internet connection is vital for businesses and residents to thrive and succeed. Earlier this year SaskTel and South Saskatchewan Ready (SSR) formed a partnership through SaskTel’s Community Participation Program (CPP) to bring SaskTel infiNET™ service to the towns of Bengough, Coronach, Rockglen and Willow Bunch. Powered by SaskTel’s fibre optic broadband network, infiNET service delivers internet speeds reaching close to a Gigabit per second (Gbps).
“Our partnership with SaskTel in the provision of fibre network services places us on an even footing with larger urban centres, in terms of competitiveness as well as for population retention and growth,” said Sean Wallace, Managing Director of SSR.
The Town of Coronach. located about 210 kilometres southwest of Regina, is one of four communities that will receive infiNET service through SaskTel’s Community Participation Program (Photo courtesy of the Town of Coronach).
Created in 2020, SSR is an economic partnership representing 9 rural communities, including Bengough, Coronach, Rockglen and Willow Bunch as well as the Rural Municipalities of Bengough, Happy Valley, Hart Butte, Poplar Valley, and Willow Bunch.
These communities have a background in the coal industry, but over the past few years the federal government has put strict emissions requirements in-place that will require coal-fired power plants to be shut down at the end-of-life or retrofitted with carbon capture and storage technology. to broadband connectivity across the province.
Sean explained that the region is looking to a future of green energy, tech, innovative industry and to expand its world-class agriculture industry.
Thanks to funding from Prairies Economic Development Canada, SSR was able to secure the partnership with SaskTel for the CPP, ensuring residents and businesses in the affected communities have the tools required to thrive and succeed for years to come.
“In Canada, we have decades of knowledge and experience about how industry closures affect populations and communities, especially in the rural socioeconomic context, and it should be no surprise to any level of government that we need to work collaboratively to devise solutions that work,” said Sean. “The installation of fibre is just one important facet, and a great example of a solution between all levels of government, that will help the region attract and maintain population and important services. There is still so much more work to do, and we appreciate the work and partnerships we have with the Government of Saskatchewan, associated Crown corporations and PrairiesCan for the assistance we have received thus far. This is a great example of how working together can exact positive change.”
“Our infiNET network is the largest fibre optic broadband network in the province, and SaskTel’s infrastructure has the capacity to grow to support the evolving needs of our customers and increasing popularity of cloud services, video streaming and smart technologies.”
– Kevin Spelay, SaskTel Regulatory Affairs Manager
The CPP allows communities that do not meet SaskTel’s criteria for service expansion an opportunity to receive SaskTel services. Through the program, communities provide a portion of the funds required to cover the capital costs to bring SaskTel services to their residents. This program allows SaskTel to responsibly and sustainably expand services to areas of the province where it may not otherwise be economically feasible to do so.
“The CPP allows SaskTel to provide communities with the internet service levels they require by giving them access to our broadband network,” said Kevin Spelay, SaskTel Regulatory Affairs Manager. “Our infiNET network is the largest fibre optic broadband network in the province, and SaskTel’s infrastructure has the capacity to grow to support the evolving needs of our customers and increasing popularity of cloud services, video streaming and smart technologies.”
The resulting network is owned and maintained by SaskTel in the same manner as any other of our broadband communities. This means the community will receive the same upgrades, benefits, customer service and promotions as any other SaskTel-served community.
To learn more about SaskTel infiNET service, please visit www.sasktel.com.