Cellular service is being expanded to include a 70-kilometre stretch of Highway 14 between Sooke and Port Renfrew. This will increase safety for residents and travellers, while enabling people to connect with each other in a way they have never been able to before on that stretch of highway.
The Connecting British Columbia program was expanded in September 2020 as part of StrongerBC: BC’s Economic Recovery Plan. For the first time in the program’s history, a mandate was included to improve access to cellular for people in rural and Indigenous communities. This helped make the Highway 14 project a reality.
The project will bring cellular service to the doorsteps of people in Port Renfrew, Shirley, Otter Point, Jordan River, as well as some Pacheedaht First Nation communities.
A highway rest area near the entrance to Sombrio Beach will also be upgraded to provide a Wi-Fi connection, enhancing safety and convenience for people passing through or coming to enjoy a view of the ocean.
The Connecting British Columbia program provides grants that help service providers with the cost of expanding connectivity and making it more reliable in rural and Indigenous communities.
Rogers Communications Ltd. has been selected to receive up to $4.9 million from the Connecting British Columbia program towards the cost of building the infrastructure.
Work on the Highway 14 cellular project is scheduled for completion by Oct. 31, 2021.