The Regional Municipality Of York

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YorkNet

Incorporated in 2017, YorkNet is a Region-owned corporation that plans, builds, operates, manages and maintains a high-speed, dark-fibre network across York Region.

YorkNet is focused on maintaining and expanding the Region’s telecom network to support economic development and innovation in York Region, and to provide cost-effective and open access fibre connectivity for the Region.

What started out as a small network in 2002 had grown to a 200-kilometre fibre route by 2018, connecting a variety of Regional buildings and assets, including traffic control, transit, social housing units and water-quality monitoring systems. This network also supports administrative services across the Region, connects hospitals, local municipal operations, libraries and police services. We continue to grow the network year over year.

YorkNet is mandated to deliver on the following three key priorities:

  1. Continuing to grow the Region’s fibre network to improve the delivery of Regional services, such as traffic management, transit, infrastructure monitoring and policing
  2. Working with municipalities, schools, hospitals and other public-sector organizations in the Region to leverage the network to improve services
  3. Providing private-sector open access to the network to drive economic and social benefits that will give residents, businesses and public-sector customers enhanced service, better pricing, or both, particularly in rural areas of the Region

Governance

YTN Telecom Network Inc. (YorkNet is the operational name) is a Municipal Services Corporation established under Ontario Regulation 599/06. As a municipal corporation, YorkNet’s operations are governed by the Ontario Business Corporations Act (OBCA), rather than the Municipal Act, as is the case for York Region and all municipalities in Ontario.

Board of Directors

  • Mayor Margaret Quirk, Town of Georgina (Chair of the Board)
  • Chairman and CEO Wayne Emmerson, York Region
  • Mayor Virginia Hackson, Town of East Gwillimbury
  • Mayor Iain Lovatt, Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville
  • Mayor Steven Pellegrini, Township of King
  • Mayor Frank Scarpitti, City of Markham
  • Mayor John Taylor, Town of Newmarket
  • Regional Councillor Jim Jones, City of Markham
  • Regional Councillor Gino Rosati, City of Vaughan

Connect to Innovate

Connect to Innovate (CTI) is a Federal Government program managed by the Ministry of Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada. Launched on December 15, 2016, the program issued a call for applications inviting those eligible to apply for funding that would bring high speed internet to rural and remote communities across Canada. The CTI program helps ensure these communities are well positioned to take advantage of the opportunities afforded by the digital age.

What CTI funding did York Region receive?

On April 20, 2017, York Region applied for funding through the CTI program and in May 2019, successfully secured up to $2M to expand its dark-fibre network to improve connectivity for underserved communities, primarily the Chippewas of Georgina Island First Nations and the community of Udora. This funding, together with York Region’s $3.2M contribution, will build a specific route to reach Georgina Island and extend down to Udora, while also connecting important Regional and public sector facilities along the way.

The Regional Municipality of York en-US

Who is responsible for building the infrastructure in York Region?

YorkNet is responsible for constructing, operating and managing its dark-fibre network across York Region for the purpose of maintaining and expanding the Region’s telecom network to support economic development and innovation in York Region, and to provide cost-effective and open-access fibre connectivity for the Region.

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What does this mean for York Region residents and businesses and how will they benefit?

Once the Connect to Innovate section of the network is complete in 2021, YorkNet will make fibre connectivity available to internet carriers, who can in turn offer services to residents and businesses in these underserved areas. It is the internet carriers who actually “light” the fibre, which ultimately “turns on” the dark-fibre to provide high speed internet to residents and businesses. York Region is committed to engaging and working with telecommunication and internet service providers to have them complete the final network connection that will deliver better internet service to York Region residents.

Residents who do not have access to high-speed internet or are unsatisfied with their current internet service, may wish to contact the internet service providers that offer services in their area to determine if they will be providing enhanced services as a result of this investment.

The Regional Municipality of York en-US

Why is this CTI expansion important to York Region?

Extending and enhancing high-speed internet service in our rural communities is a top priority for York Region.

Access to high-speed internet is critical to improving the delivery of education and health care, while driving innovation, economic growth and job creation.

It is also providing connectivity to improve the delivery of Regional Services.

The Regional Municipality of York en-US

Beyond the CTI funding, what is YorkNet’s plan for constructing a fibre network throughout the Region?

YorkNet has developed a comprehensive plan for constructing the Regional network. Over the next 10 years, additional fibre network will be constructed in all municipalities in the Region.

Local municipalities are collaborating with YorkNet on a strategy and opportunities to increase internet speeds to local residents and businesses.

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How do I learn more about the CTI route for York Region?

More information will be provided at community information sessions this fall. More details are provided below.

The Regional Municipality of York en-US

Connect to Innovate Information Sessions

Together with the Towns of East Gwillimbury and Georgina, YorkNet provided an overview of its role in implementing the Connect to Innovate (CTI) Program. The sessions in Fall 2019 provided residents with an opportunity to speak to internet service providers to discuss connectivity possibilities.

Materials from the information sessions are provided below:

Information Brochure

Presentation


Telecommunication and Internet Service Providers

Telecommunication and internet service providers can access York Region’s public, dark-fibre network for flexible capacity and connectivity options, including the opportunity to:

  • Extend your network footprint
  • Take advantage of our high-quality network
  • Access dark-fibre and scale your bandwidth to meet consumer demand
  • Get you to your customers faster and more cost-efficiently

The Broader Public Sector

There are a variety of benefits for municipalities, universities, school boards, hospitals and others to connect to YorkNet’s advanced dark fibre network. These include:

  • Accessing York Region’s public dark- fibre network for flexible capacity and connectivity options
  • Improving broadband availability over time to better connect York Region, especially in rural and underserved areas
  • Accessing unlimited bandwidth via dark-fibre, ideal for high-bandwidth activities, cloud-based applications and remote data centre operations

For more information on partnering with YorkNet to deliver or receive high-speed internet across York Region, please contact yorknet@york.ca.



Related Resources


YTN,fibre,dark network,link,YorkNet The Regional Municipality of York en-US Image of fiber optic cable YorkNet Access York Region’s public, open-access dark fibre network, for flexible capacity and connectivity options.

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