Vermilion launches broadband service for business and residents

A partnership between the Town of Vermilion and a high-speed internet service provider hopes to allow residents and business owners connection speeds online that are up to par in major centres. 

On Tuesday, Nov. 1, the Town hosted a luncheon presentation and ribbon cutting with Alberta Broadband Networks and Primus Telecommunications, kicking off what they believe is one of the most advanced broadband projects that rural Canada has ever seen. 

“This hasn’t happened overnight, this has been a couple of years in the making. And it’s finally coming to an end here today. And we’re very proud to be here,” Vermilion mayor Greg Throndson told Lakeland Connect. 

Greg Throndson, Vermilion Mayor, addresses the gallery.

For a few years, the Town has explored options to try and improve broadband speeds, an issue they see hurting future investment in Vermilion. 

Businesses particularly on 47th Avenue in the industrial heart of the town have seen business suffer due to the lagging internet. 

The idea began in 2017 with its initial feasibility study and in 2020, the town ran a pilot project with new internet systems. 

But for the past 18 months, little has been said about the project up until last Tuesday. Primus, the internet service provider, says that one gigabit and greater speeds can be achieved by those who sign up to their fibre optics. 

The system is set to go online at the end of November. 

“We are committed to keeping our community growing and thriving,” says Mary Lee Prior, Vermilion’s Manager of Economic Development, in a press release. “We know that in order to attract investors, developers and entrepreneurs, retain local businesses, support existing residents and encourage new ones to move in, we have to solve our broadband issue.” 

Users must sign up through the Primus website to access the service, where technicians will do a site visit and complete the hookups necessary. 

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