Thank you for your interest in the Northwestern Ontario Innovation Centre (NOIC) and our programs. The NOIC is always pursuing opportunities to enhance connectivity in regions and communities across Northwestern Ontario, especially areas where the business case may be challenging for private sector investment. On this page, you will find details on current, upcoming, and recently closed Expressions of Interest (EOI).
Why do we issue Expressions of Interest?
We issue an EOI as a way to collect feedback from our private sector partners prior to issuing an RFP. The NOIC uses this feedback to discuss funding opportunities with the public sector and then collaborate with interested vendors during the RFP process. Through this collaborative process, we’re able to initiate projects with public and private sector buy-in, ultimately leading to enhanced connectivity at sites across the region.
Open: Highway 502 Corridor from Fort Frances to Dryden
The purpose of this Expression of Interest (EOI) is to solicit proposals from Vendors who would be interested in providing cellular coverage along the highway 502 corridor from Fort Frances to Dryden. For the purposes of this EOI, we define cellular coverage as near-continuous, 4G service from Fort Frances to Dryden with the ability to scale for growth in demand. The deadline for confirming your intent to submit an EOI is May 29, 2020.
Furthermore, Vendors can assume there will be government funding for capital expenditures. Required funding levels for project feasibility will be determined by the Vendor and should be noted in your response as a percentage of estimated CapEx. Please note, the likelihood of receiving government funding for OpEx costs is very low. Therefore, proposals including OpEx funding are less likely to be invited to the RFP. However, due to the exploratory nature of this project, the NOIC is considering all proposals and business models.
Due to the inherent exploratory nature of off-grid service delivery in NWO, it is understood that this project can be satisfied by a number of solutions, technologies and business models. It is the NOICs hope that this project serves as a pilot project for future initiatives and further government support.
Finally, there is already support for this project at a municipal level with several communities in the area formally writing to various levels of government and private stakeholders requesting service in this area.