High-Tech Community Praises Waterfront Breakthrough: "A vital step towards an Intelligent Canada"
June 7, 2011

Ottawa, June 7, 2011 -- Canada's largest high-tech association, the Canadian Advanced Technology Alliance (CATA), announced its support for today's announcement from Waterfront Toronto that a contract has been let to create ultra-high-speed service for downtown Toronto.

"This recognizes a sea change in the importance of communications," said CATA President John Reid. "At last week's Intelligent Community Forum meeting in New York, Finland's Minister of Communications stated that her government is now treating access to broadband as a 'Universal Human Right'! When broadband access becomes as important as food and shelter, you know we are in a different age."

Acknowledging that Canada's telecom carriers have thus far done very good work in spreading broadband across the country, Mr. Reid praised the Waterfront initiative, saying that "we need to explore all models for the development of ultra-high-speed broadband. This private-sector-development model will be a worthy alternative for consideration going forward.

"This new service will allow Canada's commercial capital, Toronto, to jump forward with a competitive edge, and match the ranks of the best in world. It is also important to note that the network is being created in the "open access" model, which will encourage competition for services and for the creation of new applications."

Every home and business in the new communities will be wired with fibre and provided with affordable and unlimited access to internet speeds up to 500 times faster than typical North American residential networks. The network will also provide full community-wide Wi-Fi service. The ultra-high speed network will deliver internet connections starting at 100 megabits per second for residential customers and up to 10 gigabits per second for commercial customers. The service is being offered at competitive cost.

"We have been using the Waterfront model as a 'living lab' for our i-CANADA initiative," added Mr. Reid. "i-CANADA is dedicated towards making all Canadian communities -- large and small, urban and rural -- into Intelligent Communities, so we can enjoy the benefits for health care, education, business and society, that come from digitally-enabled prosperity. This will be a tremendous inspiration for all communities"

For further information please contact:
Barry Gander,
EVP, CATA
613-340-0701
bgander@cata.ca