High-speed Internet expansion project to continue until end of 2022.
Service providers cite May storm as major cause for delays.
A large-scale project to extend high-speed Internet connectivity to rural areas of the Outaouais that was scheduled to finish by the end of September has been delayed until the end of 2022 with Internet Service Providers (ISPs) citing the weather events as a major cause.
The project is part of an initiative named “Operation haut vitesse” which aims to provide high-speed Internet connection to every home in Quebec. Funded by both federal and provincial governments, the project includes investing $147 million in Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to extend connectivity to rural parts of the Outaouais.
When it was first launched in spring 2021, Bell was responsible for connecting approximately 10,600 homes in the Outaouais, Cogeco 2,890 homes and Xplornet 15,310 homes. The smaller rural ISP, Connexion Fibre Picanoc also received $1.1 million to connect 155 homes.
Bell’s Senior Manager for Media Relations Caroline Audet, noted that while many homes have already been connected in areas where Bell is responsible, such as Low, Kazabazua and Chapeau, as well as other parts of the MRC of Pontiac, “weather events earlier in the year” caused delays for the project.
Audet said that the company expects the work to be fully completed by the end of this year and that residents can visit Bell’s website (www.bell.ca) to check for service availability.
Cogeco has been responsible for providing service in various parts of the MRC des Collines-de-l’Outaouais, including Quyon, as well as parts of the MRC of Pontiac. Communications Advisor Laurise Roy-Tremblay explained that, while work is now advancing well, “inclement weather such as the May storm” and other unforeseen circumstances such as supply shortages and a labour shortage impacted the pace of the project.
She said teams remain focused on delivering services and that the company will continue construction over the winter so that all remaining homes will be connected before the end of the year.
To be notified when services become available, residents can sign up on Cogeco’s website at
Residents can also use an interactive map on the Government of Quebec’s Website to check the current status of “Operation haut-vitesse” including the status of operations in their locality: https://www.quebec.ca/gouvernement/politiques-orientations/carte-internet-haute-vitesse
The two other ISPs involved in the project - Xplornet and Connexion Fibre Picanoc – were contacted; however, no response was received in time for publication.
Further updates on this project will be published as more information becomes available.