Rogers Completes B.C. Highway 14 Cell Service Project

From Left to Right: BC Search and Rescue Association Dwight Yochim, Rogers Chief Technology and Information Officer Ron McKenzie, Lisa Beare, Minister of Citizens’ Services and Michele Babchuk, MLA for North Island 

Travellers journeying from Sooke to Port Renfrew will now benefit from full cellular service, thanks to the completion of seven new cell towers on Vancouver Island in B.C. This development aims to improve connectivity and safety for local residents, workers, and tourists.

A collaborative project led by Rogers and backed by an investment of nearly $5 million from the B.C. government, it aims to bridge the gap in wireless network coverage across the 70-kilometre stretch of Highway 14 along western Vancouver Island.

“Highway 14 is home to many stunningly beautiful areas. This newly established connectivity ensures that people can stay connected while travelling and enjoying this coastal landscape,” said Lisa Beare, Minister of Citizens’ Services, in a statement.

In March 2023, the B.C. government announced additional funding of $75 million to support similar cellular projects across the province’s highways. Such initiatives underscore B.C.’s commitment to enhancing highway cellular service by contributing to the overall costs of projects led by service providers.

This investment is a part of StrongerBC, B.C.’s Economic Plan. This strategy is aimed at rebuilding a strong economy with inclusive growth for all communities.

“Together with the B.C. government, Rogers is proud to provide cellular connectivity on this stretch of Highway 14 for the first time, bringing 5G service and increasing safety for residents, travellers and emergency responders along this vital route. Through our transformative merger with Shaw, we are committed to bringing fast, reliable networks to more communities across Western Canada over the next five years, investing $6.5 billion in our networks in the West,” said Ron McKenzie, chief technology and information officer, Rogers Communications, in an issued statement.

Back in January, Rogers provided an update on the B.C. Highway 14 project, saying 5 of 7 cell towers had been installed, with the rest ready to be completed by spring.

Despite significant progress, as of December 2022, out of 15,000 kilometres of primary, secondary, and major highways in B.C., 4,200 km still lack cellular service. The Province, in collaboration with the federal government, has committed $830 million as of March 2022 to expand broadband internet to all under-served households by 2027.