Rossland council getting up to speed on broadband possibilities

The Columbia Basin Trust recently had a presentation regarding the possibility of bringing much faster broadband to Rossland.

Coun. Jody Blomme enthusiastically argued that faster broadband would be a great opportunity to spur on digital businesses in Rossland

Coun. Jody Blomme enthusiastically argued that faster broadband would be a great opportunity to spur on digital businesses in Rossland

The Columbia Basin Trust recently had a presentation regarding the possibility of bringing much faster broadband to Rossland. The Columbia Basin Broadband Corporation will be investing to try to bring up speeds all over the West Kootenay.

Coun. Jody Blomme brought the subject up in council Monday, saying that what the CBT is offering is much more than just broadband.

“There is a growing need for internet bandwidth for the levels of use in our personal work lives,” Blomme said.

The corporation will be doing most of the assessment and training work.

As things stand now in Rossland, we have companies that need to send attachments and need to break up those attachments (and send individually) to get them to work because bandwidth levels are a lot less,” she said, adding that there are companies that would like to do business in Rossland, but require the higher speeds.

“If Rossland did have broadband, Rossland would be a very attractive place for the digital based industry, typically this is an industry that doesn’t take up a large amount of land mass or create a lot of waste, but it does bring in outside dollars to the community.”

Blomme said that since now most of the work would be covered by CBT, council should invite representatives from Columbia Broadband to talk to council.

With more and more businesses allowing employees to work remotely, this could have an impact on Rossland, Blomme argued.

So far, 14 cities have been offered the opportunity to be included and 12 have decided to go into the project, with Rossland one of the undecided.

Mayor Greg Granstrom said it was important to note that though it could be a value to the economy, if the need was in Rossland then Telus or Shaw would have already built it.

Blomme responded that there were reasons that may not happen, and they should let the CBT representatives make the case.

Coun. Kathy Moore seconded everything that Blomme said.

“The future waits for no one, important that we don’t get left behind,” she said.