Two new cell towers will be online in Dunster and Dome Creek this year, after Telus received support for their expansion.
Telus plans to connect 1,700 km of highway corridor over the next few years, says Shawn Hall, Telus spokesperson. Hall says the new sites will provide critical links for emergency services along the highway. He notes more than 90 per cent of all 911 calls come in from wireless devices now. The improvements also create opportunities for wireless internet service and economic development, he says.
Both Dunster and Dome Creek cell towers are under construction, and should be live sometime this year, he says. Between them, Telus is investing $1.3. The Dome Creek site is just off the highway 115 km east of Prince George, and will provide coverage to more than 13 km of the highway, while the other one in Dunster will provide coverage for that community and about 20 km of highway on either side.
Hall says during planning stages the company meets with local government, advertises the sites in local newspapers and sends letters to nearby residents to ensure people know what is going on. Hall says they consulted with the Dome Creek Community Association, Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, and Dunster Community Association during their planning processes on the sites.