Internet signals ready for a big boost

  • May. 19, 2015 5:00 p.m.

By Rhonda Lee McIsaacHaida Gwaii ObserverThe GwaiiTel Society has been approved for a $161,000 grant to boost the bandwidth for Internet users dependent on radio signals. The grant, from the Northern Development Initiative Trust, under the Economic Diversification Infrastructure Program, is given to projects aimed at the construction of public multi-use facilities or capital investments that drive revenue and job creation, as well provide a long-term asset for the community. “They’ve added broadband to the program in acknowledgment of how important the Internet is to economic development,” GwaiiTel Chair Carol Kulesha said. “Communication is key.”A key aspect of the first-time application by GwaiiTel Society was that it aimed to create a significant telecommunications improvement to broadband Internet users on Haida Gwaii. The grant will be used to support the purchase of a second radio set connecting Mount Hays to Old Massett and a system-wide caching server for Haida Gwaii. “When the Internet goes out [on Haida Gwaii], it can be for a while,” Director of Economic Development Dean McKinley said.Ms. Kulesha says there are many variables to consider when Internet fails on Haida Gwaii, particularly with the radio signal. “If it’s a radio problem, we have to get to Mount Hays and get up to Mount Hays.”The second set of radios also has another bonus in that it doubles the available bandwidth for users on the island.The caching server would help free up bandwidth when users are downloading updates for their phones and software. The caching server would store the updates on island and would not have to be relayed across the Hecate Strait to Mount Hays. “It frees up some bandwidth,” Ms. Kulesha said. All of the upgrades are expected to be completed by the end of 2015.”This is one big part of our infrastructure development and we’ve put in two other grants that we are awaiting the result of,” Ms. Kulesha added. “It’s a stand-alone project that improves service to Haida Gwaii. It also strengthens GwaiiTel’s $7.6-million application to the federal government’s Digital Canada 150 program, a federal government program aimed at increasing the nation’s digital connectivity by the country’s 150th birthday in 2017.

Just Posted

Blaze consumes dwelling in Masset

The Masset Fire Department received the first call around 8 p.m.

All Nations Driving Academy gets $360K boost from province

Terrace-based driving school bridges gap in services for remote northwest B.C. communities

Skeena Watershed reopened for recreational pink and coho

Four sections and tributaries remain closed

Skeena-Bulkley Valley candidates react to finding Trudeau broke ethics law

The election campaign is heating up before the writ has even dropped

VIDEO: Langley Ribfest met with protesters

Groups that oppose the event for various reasons plan to be on site each of the three days.

Canadians killed in Afghanistan honoured during emotional dedication ceremony

One-hundred-fifty-eight Canadian soldiers died during the mission

It’s snow joke: Up to 30 cm of snow expected to fall in northeastern B.C.

Alaska Highway, Fort Nelson to be hit with August snowstorm, according to Environment Canada

‘I’m just absolutely disgusted’: Husband furious after B.C. Mountie’s killer gets day parole

Kenneth Fenton was sentenced to prison after he fatally struck Const. Sarah Beckett’s cruiser

Sea-to-Sky Gondola in B.C. likely out of commission until 2020

Sea to Sky Gondola carries between 1,500 and 3,000 people every day during the summer season

Helicopter-riding dog Mr. Bentley now featured on cans of new B.C.-made beer

Partial proceeds from every pack go to Children’s Wish

PHOTOS: Weapons seized at Portland right-wing rally, counterprotests

Not all who gathered Saturday were with right-wing groups or antifa

Discussion on grief and loss between Stephen Colbert, Anderson Cooper goes viral

The exchange includes emotional question from Cooper, and outlook on grief as a child

Toronto activist calling on federal parties to nominate more black candidates

Fewer than 20 black Canadians have been nominated so far, including some Liberal MPs seeking re-election

Most Read