Community Broadband in BC: A Development Champion Gains New Power

Rural Communities in British Columbia now have a faster runway to accessible broadband connectivity, with the announcement that Roel Coert has officially taken on the role of i-VALLEY Vice President, B.C.

Roel Coert is one of Canada’s foremost experts in telecom technologies, Open Access broadband,
infrastructures and telecom operations. He has designed and managed networks in a dozen or more cities and townships in the province.

i-VALLEY is a not-for-profit association currently building Canada’s largest municipal rural broadband network in Nova Scotia. The alliance with Roel is a “bridging of Canada,” according to i-VALLEY President Terry Dalton.

“We have worked with Roel on rural broadband in the past, and we are delighted that he will be joining us to help BC communities connect with the global Internet,” stated Mr. Dalton. “Roel is one of Canada’s most experienced and successful network planners, with an exemplary grasp of community networks, which are now urgently needed in today’s pandemic crises.”

“I am looking forward to combining my provincial knowledge with the power of the i-VALLEY team,” stated Mr. Coert. “It is vital to plug our rural communities into the global network now that COVID has altered everyone’s ability to interact in person. Even before COVID, most of the world’s economic growth was happening online; now, an online connection is an essential tool to enable families and businesses to obtain services like healthcare and economic sustainability.”

Roel Coert and i-VALLEY have developed programs that can quickly design rural networks, develop financial plans, arrange to finance and implement the network. “Rural areas have the advantage of treating their networks like utilities,” said Mr. Dalton, “financing them over 30 years just like roads or electric power. Future-proofing an accessible network is the key, and we are looking forward to working in BC with Roel.”

Roel Coert founded open access networks in communities such as the cities of Coquitlam (QNet), New Westminster (BridgeNet), and Campbell River (CR Advantage). These networks involved community access through fibre and wireless structures, with multiple competitive service providers and a range of network plans and financial models. Roel has also worked in Bamfield, Kamloops, Delta, Kelowna, Chilliwack, the Township of Langley, and the City of Port Moody. He has led the TELUS team to provide fibre-to-the-home deployment and has been instrumental in the success of multi-million-dollar projects abroad.

Mr. Coert retains his role as President of Go4objectives Ltd., based in Lions Bay, BC.

For further information, please contact:

Barry Gander
Co-Founder, i-VALLEY
604 767 7498

Roel Coert
Vice President, i-VALLEY BC