Rogers Communications plans to build new cell towers to provide service to Pass Creek and Crescent Valley.
In a news release, the Regional District of Central Kootenay said Area I director Andy Davidoff and Area H director Walter Popoff have been working with the Columbia Basin Broadband Corporation and Rogers. The company is prepared to commit up to $2 million to build the towers.
Davidoff said the commitment will enhance safety for residents and economic development in the region:
“These towers are imperative to improving public safety and connecting our region to the rest of the province and country,” he said in the news release.
“All of our emergency service providers have been requesting cell service in Pass Creek as a safety measure for many years to avoid situations where fire and police departments or residents are unable to communicate because of a lack of cell service during an emergency.”
“This is a long time coming for our community and countless hours have been spent working with Rogers and Columbia Basin Broadband Corporation, to come up with a solution,” Popoff said.
“After the Lemon Creek jet fuel spill in 2013 I realized how important it is to the safety of Area H residents to have cell service in the Slocan Valley and I have been working towards that end over these last few years.”
The funding commitment from Rogers will cover all of the cost of construction and equipment.
“By Rogers covering the entire cost, this will free up funds to put towards completing energy upgrades and a potential childcare service at the Pass Creek Community Hall,” added Davidoff.
According to the RDCK news release, Rogers will be starting the regulatory process to obtain approval for the two towers, including a collaborative process to determine optimal sites to ensure the largest amount of coverage for the area with the least amount of impact to the community.