Bauline to get cell service thanks to 3-way partnership with government and Bell

Six years after it started planning to get cell service, the Town of Bauline has the funding to do it.

The town will partner with the province and Bell Canada on the $466,000 project to bring 4G LTE (long-term evolution) coverage to the area. Bell will put up 50 per cent of the money, with the municipal and provincial governments splitting the rest.

For Mayor Craig LeGrow, it's a big get.

"We're trying to set up an industrial area in the town," he said. "Businesses have looked at coming here, but because of no cell service, you know, cell service is everything to a business."

Marie Isabelle Rochon/Radio-Canada

The majority of the town doesn't have any service, including the new community centre built two years ago.

LeGrow said they've lost weddings and events at the centre — key revenue for the community — because it didn't have cell service.

Kimberly Janes is a mother of teenage kids and a lifelong resident of Bauline.

Like any parent, she worries about her kids when they leave the house and go out on the roads. In her case, however, she's especially worried something could happen to them and they'd have no way to call for help.

"You could go off the road and you don't know how long you'll be there until someone comes along to help you out," she said.

Marie Isabelle Rochon/Radio-Canada

Once 4G coverage is in place, contacting her kids is not something she'll have to worry about anymore.

"Provided they answer their phones," she laughed.

It's expected the work will take about 18 months to complete.

Minister of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation Chris Mitchelmore said Bauline is the eighth community to benefit from the province's cellular expansion project. More could come in the future.

"Should the budget pass this year, we have another commitment to invest in cellular service moving forward," he said. "So we look forward to opening up applications soon."

Most recently, two towns on the Port au Port Peninsula raised money through things like talent shows and dances to raise their portion of the partnership.

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