Subsea fibre optics running from Prince Rupert to Haida Gwaii and and then south to Vancouver will improve high-speed internet connection options for Coastal Communities, CityWest said on Oct. 13, 2020.

Subsea fibre optics running from Prince Rupert to Haida Gwaii and and then south to Vancouver will improve high-speed internet connection options for Coastal Communities, CityWest said on Oct. 13, 2020.

CityWest acquires West Island Cable in Bamfield, BC

To be connected to the Connected Coast project

Prince Rupert’s CityWest has acquired West Island Cable in Bamfield, B.C.

In a social media release this morning, CityWest announced that it has purchased the small cable company, based in Bamfield, south of Ucluelet, on Vancouver Island, and will be connected to the much-heralded Connected Coast project.

In 1901, a trans-Pacific undersea telegraph cable was laid from Fanning Island (south of Hawaii) to Bamfield, a small town on the west coast of Vancouver Island. The telegraph station allowed for worldwide communications in a very short time span. Although the station was decommissioned in 1959, it now houses the Bamfield Marine Science Centre.

“We’re excited to work with CityWest, a company that knows the importance of community support where they do business,” said Eric Geall, president of West Island Cable. “We’ve built this company with the support of our community, and we’re looking forward to continuing that tradition with CityWest.”

In the near term, customers will not notice a change in their bills or their existing services. They will continue to receive the same service over fibre that has been provided to them by West Island Cable.

“For us, this is the perfect partnership,” said Stefan Woloszyn, CEO of CityWest. “Both companies share a common goal of using first-rate technology to improve the lives of their customers – West Island through its ‘Gigafy Bamfield’ project, and CityWest through our many fibre-to-the-home builds in rural and remote communities. We’re looking forward to serving the community of Bamfield with great customer service and advanced technology.”

CityWest said, “Once the Connected Coast project is activated in Bamfield, customers will see even faster Internet speeds at reasonable prices – and, they won’t have to worry about any data limits. The Connected Coast project will bring new or improved high-speed internet accessibility to 139 rural and remote coastal communities, including 48 Indigenous communities – representing 44 First Nations – along the BC coast from north of Prince Rupert, to Haida Gwaii, south to Vancouver, and around Vancouver Island.”

The project is currently in the permitting stage, and will begin construction later in 2021. After its completion Bamfield will once again be part of a sprawling undersea network that will bring improved communication services to its residents, businesses, and government organizations.

No financial information was released for the acquisition.