TELUS investing $20 million to connect Nelson homes and businesses to advanced fibre optic network and prepare for the future of 5G

Advanced TELUS PureFibre optic network and new cell towers will help residents, businesses, and service providers innovate locally, compete globally and deliver better health, education and social outcomes

Nelson, B.C. – TELUS is investing $20 million to connect more than 90 per cent of homes and businesses in Nelson directly to its fibre optic network and enhance wireless connectivity throughout the region. Construction on the TELUS PureFibre network will begin this summer, and TELUS anticipates the majority of homes and businesses will be connected by the end of the year. TELUS also recently completed construction of two cell towers in Nelson and the Village of Slocan, and upgraded its wireless site in Rossland, bringing enhanced and more reliable cellular connectivity to residents, businesses and visitors in the region.

“These investments to bring TELUS PureFibre and enhanced wireless connectivity to Nelson will future-proof the community and allow innovation, entrepreneurship and jobs to thrive for generations to come,” said Tony Geheran, TELUS Executive Vice-President and Chief Customer Officer. “Only TELUS PureFibre brings the fibre network connection right to the doorstep of your home or business, offering equally fast upload and download speeds and a connection that won’t slow down even during busy times when all of your neighbours are also online. As the cost of living in major centres increases, families, professionals, and retirees are increasingly looking to live in beautiful communities like Nelson. This connectivity will attract new residents, talent and entrepreneurs, and will help businesses innovate locally and compete globally whether they’re established operations or new home-based start-ups. As we continue to build on the generational investments we’ve made in every corner of B.C., we look forward to continuing to engage and work with the Government of B.C., municipalities, Indigenous communities and stakeholders.”

These investments build upon TELUS’ continued commitment to bring world-class wireless and wireline connectivity to communities across the province. Since 2000 through 2018, TELUS has invested more than $47 billion in technology and operations in B.C., and over the next three years through 2021, TELUS plans on investing an additional $8 billion connecting and supporting communities at no cost to taxpayers. Since 2013, TELUS has invested $3 billion to connect 116 communities in B.C., Alberta and eastern Quebec to the TELUS PureFibre network, and will have connected more than 50 Indigenous communities in B.C. and Alberta by the end of next year. Nearby communities already connected to TELUS PureFibre include Kelowna, Penticton, Osoyoos, Oliver, Grand Forks, Castlegar, Creston, Fernie, and Kimberley.

“As an entrepreneur born and raised in Nelson, I know firsthand that introducing PureFibre will not only better connect the hundreds of remote workers that operate in Nelson, it also makes the region increasingly inviting for organizations like Traction on Demand, who are dependent on reliable, secure and fast connectivity,” said Greg Malpass, Founder & CEO, Traction on Demand. “I’ve been a longstanding admirer and customer of TELUS – they continue to prove that what is good for business is also good for growing communities, demonstrated by these massive network investments to connect regions hungry for better technology. Technology is the fastest growing industry in British Columbia, and connecting the Kootenay region with this caliber of connectivity creates new opportunities for people to live, play and work in one of the most spectacular places in the world.”

The gigabit-enabled TELUS PureFibre network is among the most advanced communications infrastructure available in the world today, enabling residents to immediately take advantage of dramatically fast Internet upload and download speeds on plans like 750/750 Mbps or Gigabit Internet at 940/940 Mbps. Gigabit Internet customers can download a full HD movie, upload 100 high-resolution photos in just a few seconds. The TELUS PureFibre network also provides significant benefits for applications like video conferencing, gaming, and home security. Supported by the TELUS PureFibre network, TELUS Smart Home Security offers 24/7 real-time monitoring and smart controls to manage cameras, lock and unlock doors, indoor and outdoor lighting, and even the thermostat.

“TELUS’ commitment to high-speed Internet for Nelson is great news,” said Acting Mayor Rik Logtenberg. “New technology like self-driving cars and virtual reality require the faster speeds and lower latency. Having these speeds will help set us up for the future.”

“We are working in partnership to make record investments in connectivity to make life better for all British Columbians,” said Jinny Sims, Minister of Citizens’ Services. “I want to congratulate TELUS for their work to bring this fibre network to the community of Nelson. This project along with other recent investments in the Kootenay area will pave the way for next generation technology - making Nelson 5G and tech ready.”

In the immediate term, local healthcare providers, educators and technology companies will be able to draw upon the technology to reimagine how they deliver existing services and develop entirely new solutions. As the backbone of TELUS’ wireless network, this new fibre optic infrastructure will enable more wireless capacity and faster speeds throughout the region, and lays the groundwork for 5G technologies in the years ahead.

“This TELUS project will make it easier and faster to do business and access important services. It spurs innovation and helps us attract tech talent that sets the stage for the next generation network,” said Michelle Mungall, MLA for Nelson-Creston. “Nelson will enjoy the benefits for years to come.”

A direct connection to the TELUS PureFibre network comes at no cost to taxpayers or residents. Residents can expect to see TELUS trucks throughout the community as construction begins, and TELUS representatives out knocking on their door to receive permission to connect their home to the network. Once homes are connected, residents can immediately begin taking advantage of dramatically faster and symmetrical Internet speeds.

For more information, please visit telus.com/purefibre.

About TELUS TELUS (TSX: T, NYSE: TU) is one of Canada’s largest telecommunications companies, with $14.4 billion of annual revenue and 13.4 million subscriber connections, including 9.2 million wireless subscribers, 1.9 million high-speed Internet subscribers, 1.2 million residential network access lines and 1.1 million TELUS TV customers. TELUS provides a wide range of communications products and services, including wireless, data, Internet protocol (IP), voice, television, entertainment, video and home and business security. TELUS is also Canada's largest healthcare IT provider, and TELUS International delivers business process solutions around the globe.

In support of our philosophy to give where we live, TELUS, our team members and retirees have contributed over $650 million to charitable and not-for-profit organizations and volunteered more than 1.21 million days of service to local communities since 2000. Created in 2005 by President and CEO Darren Entwistle, TELUS’ 13 Canadian community boards and five International boards have led the Company’s support of grassroots charities and have contributed $72 million in support of 7,000 local charitable projects, enriching the lives of more than 2 million children and youth, annually. TELUS was honoured to be named the most outstanding philanthropic corporation globally for 2010 by the Association of Fundraising Professionals, becoming the first Canadian company to receive this prestigious international recognition. For more information about TELUS, please visit telus.com.

For media inquiries, please contact: Liz Sauvé TELUS Social and Media Relations Liz.Sauve@telus.com