Fibre-Optic Broadband Project on Hold Due to High Construction Costs

Council is requesting further investigation after receiving significantly higher than anticipated bids

HIGH RIVER, ALBERTA – High River’s fibre-optic broadband project will not be moving forward at this time after a second round of construction bids came in significantly higher than anticipated. Town Council agreed that it would not be a responsible use of taxpayer resources given the bid pricing. The committee in-charge of the broadband project has been tasked with investigating other options to bring in favourable pricing for a service that meets the demands of businesses that indicated that broadband was critical to their success.

The construction bid of $1.2M exceeded the budget by four times, rendering the decision today to delay while further investigation is conducted.

“The Town remains committed to the viability and development of business in High River and will continue to investigate improvements to The Town’s connectivity but will not move forward with a solution that isn’t fiscally responsible and viable long-term,” says Mayor Snodgrass.

A number of possibilities have been identified but require thorough investigation and pricing before they could be presented as viable solutions. The initial commitment by Council was to bring in reliable and affordable, high-speed broadband (fiber optics) to allow businesses within the Town to access services at speeds of 100 times what is currently available. At this time, the costs are prohibitive to deliver on this commitment.

Further details will be shared as information is gathered and presented to Council.