CAMPBELL RIVER – The Strathcona Regional District (SRD) hosted Community Broadband Planning forums in June of 2019 where seven communities within the regional district were visited throughout a two-week block.
The Community Broadband Plans (CBP) project methodology was founded on design principles set-out by Connected Communities BC, weaving together a combination of diverse skill-sets; technical network engineers with community facilitators. Presentations from guest speakers and videos showcasing possibilities for a digital future while gathering ideas from the community about their current state of use as well as plans for housing, economic, environmental and social developments took place at the Let’s Connect CBP forums last June.
An open discussion followed the presentations and participants provided a great deal of information about the current state of connectivity in their community as well as how improved broadband might be utilized to address community challenges and opportunities.
The information gathered from last years Community Broadband Planning forums has created a unique snapshot of the community’s digital readiness and aspirations. This snapshot will now be provided to last-mile broadband infrastructure solution designers to develop a plan based on the community snapshot along with analysis of the community’s topography, climate, housing density, location of key institutions. In this way, the infrastructure is informed by the community aspirations amongst other important technical considerations.
“Improved broadband connectivity for rural and remote communities has been a strategic priority of the SRD for several years,” says SRD Board Chair Michele Babchuk. “There is a significant gap between broadband service levels and affordability in urban areas versus rural areas in British Columbia. In fact, many communities within the SRD do not meet basic service levels, if they have any service at all.”
To view the following Community Broadband Plans visit www.srd.ca/community-broadband-plans