The Connected Coast project plans to place subsea fibre-optic cable, stretching from Prince Rupert south to Vancouver, then around Vancouver Island. In total, it is estimated that the project has the potential to benefit 175,000 British Columbians, living in 90,000 households.

The impact of the project and the opportunities it will provide to these communities will be enormous. Access to reliable high-speed internet means that residents will be able to access online learning and health services, emergency notifications, news and participate in online discussions and sharing. It will also open new economic development opportunities for residents who will be able to work remotely and participate on e-commerce and online business development.

The Project Partners

The project is managed and implemented by CityWest and the Strathcona Regional District (SRD), who together form the Connected Coast Partnership. The two organizations initially submitted individual projects but realized improved services for both areas could be attained by connecting the two networks. By providing links from Northern BC, and around Vancouver Island to the internet exchange in Vancouver, the infrastructure will increase service reliability for residents on the mainland, on the island and in rural and remote coastal communities by providing an alternate route for service, known as a redundancy.

Another benefit is reduced project cost as the two partners are able to pool resources and share costs.

The Connected Coast Partnership is actively working to engage and consult with local communities, regional districts, First Nations and local internet service providers (ISPs) to ensure the project meets the needs of communities now and in the future. The Connected Coast Partnership will also work with local ISPs, communities and anchor institutions that are interested in upgrading their local networks to allow for last-mile connections to the infrastructure.

Project Funding

Overall, the project will cost an estimated $45.4 million to provide 159 landing sites. The SRD will receive $32.5 million and CityWest will receive $12.9 million to construct the required high-speed infrastructure along the BC coast from north of Prince Rupert, to Haida Gwaii, south to Vancouver, and around Vancouver Island.  Funding for the project is provided by the Government of Canada’s Connect to Innovate (CTI) program, Indigenous Services Canada, and the Province of BC through the Connecting British Columbia program administered by Northern Development Initiative Trust.

About the Connected Coast Logo

The logo artwork was designed by Roy Henry Vickers, an award-winning First Nations artist and a Member of the Order of Canada, who was born and raised in Northwest B.C. The eight handprints around the face represent the circle of community, and symbolize how the Connected Coast project will help uplift the communities it serves. The handprints also represent the directional points of a compass. The face in the middle signifies the importance of social connection, and the circular shape is similar to the physical fibre-optic internet cable. The deep blue colour was chosen to reflect the ocean, and to acknowledge that it must be respected through the highest environmental standards when the subsea fibre cable is placed underwater.

The font was chosen because the letterforms “connect” to one another, much like the literal and metaphoric purpose of the Connected Coast project. The letters are slightly slanted to represent the speed of the bandwidth, and the stylized multi-coloured ‘S’ suggests the light running through a fibre-optic cable. The concept for the lettering was provided by From the Treehouse, a design company based in Prince Rupert. B.C.