The internet at the Energy Centre is getting a big boost right away.
City councillors have approved roughly $250,000 in an amendment to the 2020 capital budget to connect a fibre optic intranet network which will stretch from city hall to the Energy Centre.
The aim of the project is to increase connectivity speeds to municipal facilities with the Energy Centre, especially benefitting from the power boost.
“This project is pretty cool,” said Mayor Craig Copeland on The Morning After.
“And staff deserve all the credit on it. Basically, as the waterline is getting built-in, it’s throwing in a communication pipe in there. And now we’re gonna have fast internet up at the Energy Centre.”
The network will make use of existing conduits as part of the waterline from Cold Lake to Bonnyville, while others need to be added.
CAO Kevin Nagoya said that the city is hoping to have the conduits installed before the frost sets in later this year.
“All we need to do is sign the contracts. We’re shovel ready,” he said.
As the waterline is installed, the network will connect from City Hall to the Energy Centre.
These conduits will have space available for commercial internet providers to make use of.
The network will criss-cross through the city before passing behind neighbourhoods, behind Tri-City Mall, through Imperial Park, and ending at the Energy Centre.
Nagoya also emphasized that the network is intended for municipal purposes exclusively, which means Cold Lake High School or Cold Lake Museums, for example, will not be connected as they are not controlled by the municipality.
Mayor Craig Copeland said that some residents have asked for wireless internet to be provided on city buses, which he said would be worth looking at.
This project brings the capital budget to just over $9 million.