Woodlands County supporting applicants for more area broadband services

Woodlands County Council is supporting an initiative that will look to bring improved broadband services to the area.

The CRTC’s Broadband Fund will provide up to $750 million over 5 years to support projects to build or upgrade access and transport infrastructure to provide fixed and mobile wireless broadband Internet services to eligible underserved areas of Canada.

County Council last week moved to send a letter of support for eligible applicants to bring desirable broadband speeds to all parts of the region.

Woodlands County Mayor John Burrows says they were approached by two companies, one of them local, about broadband in the area and Council was happy to show support.

The CRTC was mandated by the federal government to ensure Canadians have access to broadband speeds of at least 50 megabytes download and 10 megabytes upload in rural areas.


Scott Safety Centre Expansion Project Gets Higher Budget Approved, Contract Awarded

Whitecourt Town Council this week heard an update on the Scott Safety Centre expansion project.

Last October, Council entered into a Renovation Contribution Agreement with the Stark Sports Society to share in the cost of constructing a dressing room for the Whitecourt Wolverines.

On Monday, Council heard that Requests for Proposals were sent out for the building construction, and upon coming back, the overall budget for the project is now higher than originally anticipated, from $650,000 to $800,000.

Mayor Maryann Chichak explains the increase and Council’s decision to amend the agreement.

The new budget means both the Town and Stark Sports Society will cost-share the project, contributing $400,000 each. Whitecourt will front the total costs, and Stark Sports will reimburse the town their portion on a payment schedule over 6.5 years.

Council also awarded the design-build contract to Edmonton-based company Brenex Building Corporation.

Work is expected to start on the arena as soon as possible and be completed in the near future, given the time crunch in place since the Scott Safety Centre is needed for events such as Whitecourt’s Trade Fair over Mothers Day weekend.

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