‘Slow Internet forced people to move’
Residents of a South Glengarry neighbourhood are pushing township council for improved high-speed Internet service.
The group, from Tree Haven Road in Summerstown, presented councillor-elect Sam McDonell with a petition containing 68 signatures – representing 31 of 32 homes – requesting support from their local elected representatives last Tuesday (October 30).
“Everyone on the street has signed. Only one house is missing and they’re out of town,” resident Robert Lamb told The News in an email last week.
According to Mr. Lamb, local homeowners and residents are hoping that council will be able to put pressure on “either Bell or Cogeco... to provide Internet services consistent with our needs today and into the future.”
An excerpt from the preamble included with the petition explains the “current situation” af- fecting Internet customers on Tree Haven Road.
“An unfortunate challenge in our location is that tower or satellite-based Internet services are either not possible at all or do not meet our needs. We have no other option than to go with the rural service provider, Xplornet,” it states. “Their service is not up to par with current high-speed Internet services that exist with either a fibre or cable network and the cost is quite prohibitive.”
It adds that the undersigned “have been informed that Bell requires the approval, investment and support from the township for them to proceed” with any potential high-speed projects in that area.
The neighbourhood’s present level of Internet service leaves a lot to be desired, according to the preamble.
“For the children going to school and their parents, it is currently impossible to effectively and productively do research, homework, after-school mentoring or online learning at home,” it explains.
“This is unacceptable and we all ...strongly feel, especially considering the important tax base we collectively represent on Tree Haven, that we deserve better service...”
The petition preamble also states that the status quo is adversely affecting property values.
“Being and remaining competitive within the local real estate market is hugely important and is negatively impacted by this Internet deficiency,” it declares. “There are several (home) owners who have bought here in recent years that say that had they known about the type of Internet we currently have, would have chosen to live elsewhere. Some have even moved away for that reason.”
Improved high-speed Internet for poorly-serviced or under-serviced areas of the township was a common campaign promise from South Glengarry’s council candidates during the recent municipal election campaign.
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