Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Program

Under the Next Generation Network Program (NGNP), CENGN is looking to fund innovative projects across Northern Ontario that demonstrate technology solutions that offer flexible, lower cost, higher performance residential broadband access for Northern Ontario communities.  These live technology projects will be funded for 3-6 months, designed to test new technologies and validate business case solutions to improve high-speed internet access to residences within Northern Ontario communities.

CENGN is currently accepting Expressions of Interest (EOIs) from both Northern Ontario communities and vendors. One Northern Ontario community, and a number of candidate vendors will be selected using the CENGN EOI evaluation process. Selected candidate vendors will then be requested to propose a detailed network design for the selected host community through the CENGN Request for Solution (RFS) process at a later date.

Northern Ontario Community Expressions of Interest

Interested Northern Ontario communities can respond to the below Community Expression of Interest request indicating their interest in being considered as a candidate host community for a Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Project.

Technology Expressions of Interest

Interested equipment/technology vendors can respond to the below Vendor Expression of Interest request indicating their interest in being considered as a candidate vendor to propose a technology solution including equipment, installation, and support for a Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Project.

Community EOI
Launch Date
Due Date
Call for Community Expressions of Interest
March 12, 2019
5:00PM March 29, 2019

Technology EOI
Launch
Date
Due Date
Call for Technology Expressions of Interest
March 12, 2019
5:00PM March 29, 2019

Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Program – EOI and RFS Process Document – Project #1

A. Program Overview

Under the Next Generation Network Program (NGNP), CENGN, Canada’s Centre of Excellence in Next Generation Networks, is looking to fund innovative projects across Northern Ontario that demonstrate technology solutions that offer flexible, lower cost, higher performance residential broadband access for Northern Ontario communities. This program is designed to trial new technology approaches that can significantly improve business cases or new business models, be used to promote new field-proven innovations from vendors, offer some level of broadband access to unserved communities, develop new residential broadband ecosystems, and to share technical solutions with other Northern Ontario communities looking for access or improvements to residential broadband solutions in their community.

CENGN will be providing funding for individual projects from its Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Program as part of the NGNP. CENGN is seeking technologies that address the requirement for specific technical problem statements that make it challenging to get broadband access to residences within Northern Ontario communities. With the increasing demand for on-line municipal services, email communications, on-line cultural development, social media, distance learning, tele-medicine, remote medical monitoring, on-line homework/assignment submission for students, support for on-line business, and increasing need for on-line options to work from home, there is urgent need for high-performance, low-latency residential broadband access in Northern Ontario communities.

In order to provide an environment to effectively demonstrate the effectiveness of new residential broadband technology solutions, CENGN will be encouraging community Expression of Interest (EOI) responses from Northern Ontario communities who are interested in hosting a technology project in their community. From the Community EOI responses, a single community will be selected for each project. The project will be designed to prove that a technology solution can be installed and tested while demonstrating a significantly improved level of residential broadband service to the community. This will also demonstrate a marked improvement in the business case for residential broadband access improvements for the community.

CENGN will also be encouraging EOI responses from equipment/technology vendors who are interested in providing equipment, technology and support services to be used in the live 3 – 6 month technology project. From the Technology EOI responses, a number of candidate equipment/technology vendors will be selected for each Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Project to prove that a technology solution can be installed and tested to provide a significantly improved level of residential broadband service to the EOI selected community, and in the process, demonstrate a marked improvement in the business case for residential broadband access for the community.

The purpose of the project will not only be to demonstrate a significant performance level improvement in residential broadband access in the community, but also to provide a well-tested, monitored, and documented implementation, that can be promoted and shared with other communities by the vendor(s), the community, and CENGN. It is key that the proposed project infrastructure will be scalable, and that the vendor is willing to work with the target community, and any necessary local partners, to come up with a plan to extend or expand the project infrastructure to completely meet the wider residential broadband needs of the community following the project’s successful completion.

In order to facilitate the establishment and continued operation of the 3 – 6 month duration project, equipment/ technology EOI applicants must be ready to:

  • Provide all necessary infrastructure equipment, including hardware, software, and supporting materials, to install in a selected Northern Ontario community.
  • Provide necessary labour and/or support to install the equipment in a pre-defined number of residences in the community.
  • Fully commission the technical solution in the community.
  • Provide ongoing support to maintain the system at an optimum level of operation for a period of 3 – 6 months during the project.
  • Provide access to the infrastructure that will allow CENGN or the community to assess performance levels during the project.
  • Demonstrate compliance to all regulatory requirements to ensure the technology is safe in accordance with operating internet access solutions in Canada.

Both Community EOI and Technology EOI responses will be evaluated by an independent External Review Panel (ERP), selected from technology experts, academia, and other sectors. The ERP will make recommendations to the CENGN Internal Review Panel (IRP), who will then decide which community will be selected, and which vendors will qualify to respond to the subsequent call for a Request for Solution (RFS). The RFS will be a detailed technical response, which is fine-tuned to provide a solution for the specific Northern Ontario community selected from the Community EOI process.

B. How Funding Works

Through the NGNP, CENGN will contribute 50 percent of eligible project costs for an approved project to a maximum contribution of $500,000 per project, with the remainder contributed by a minimum 1:1 cash match from the successful technology applicant. The project will be 3 – 6 months in duration. The total number of funded projects will be dependent upon funding allocated to each project. This is a reimbursement program.

Ideally, no direct funding is expected from the host community for the project, however the community may need to work with the selected vendor(s) to provide or arrange one or more of the following, depending on the technology solution selected:

  • Access to one or two secure, climate-controlled rooms or buildings for equipment racks and required equipment.
  • Additional power or air-conditioning upgrades for existing secure, climate-controlled rooms/buildings for equipment racks and equipment.
  • One or two temporary secure, climate-controlled buildings or trailers to house equipment racks and equipment.
  • One or two serviced lots with power and possibly water/sewer for equipment buildings, trailers or towers.
  • Administrative assistance in getting right of way permits, building permits, regulatory clearance, pole or tower access, or other municipal waivers to support the technical project.
  • Administrative assistance in identifying all anticipated municipal costs to be expensed by the vendor or agreed to be absorbed by the community prior to submitting the RFS submission.
  • Tree clearing to ensure unobstructed line of sight for fixed wireless links between sites. 

Every effort will be made to ensure any costs to the community are minimized, and clearly identified prior to approval, and selection of the final vendor solution for the project. Any expenses to the community will need to be clearly identified in the RFS responses by the vendor and must have been discussed with and agreed to by the host community as part of the RFS response.

Flow of Funds: CENGN funds flow only to the applicant. The applicant is responsible to reimburse partners if applicable.

  • Reimbursements are triggered by the submission and approval of claims and reports.
  • Reimbursement claims from applicant to CENGN can be made when submitting interim and final reports.
  • Reimbursement claims and reports are submitted monthly.
  • Applicants should refer to the Eligible Expenses Guide for complete details of eligible expenses.

Payment Terms: Details of the claim submission process will be made available to the successful applicants.

  • Monthly interim payments (based on submitted and approved reimbursement claims and reports).
  • 10 percent final payment (based on submitted and approved reimbursement claim and final report)
  • Payments are based on the total funded project value.
  • Only eligible expenses incurred after the awarding of the contract to the successful RFS applicant will be allowed.

C. EOI Eligibility

Eligible Community: For a Northern Ontario community to participate in the Community EOI process, the community must:

  • Be defined by CENGN to be a Northern Ontario community.
  • The CENGN criteria for a Northern Ontario community is “any community located north or west of a line draw from Renfrew west to Huntsville, then west to Parry Sound”.
  • Be willing to produce a written response to the CENGN Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Community EOI for Project #1.
  • Have a matching problem statement to that defined in the Community EOI that is preventing or making it difficult to implement residential broadband to all or part of your community.
  • Be willing to work with and support the selected vendors from the Technology EOI process for Project#1, to complete site surveys, understand location, access, and addresses of points of presence (POPs), secure buildings, equipment rooms, or equipment installation sites in the community, required for project  equipment.
  • Provide information on potential tower or equipment sites required in the community, help assess need for permits, right-of-ways, etc. to prepare and submit a formal response to the Northern Ontario Residential Broadband RFS for Project#1.

Eligible technology applicants and partners

For an equipment/technology vendor to be eligible to participate in the Technology EOI process, the vendor must:

  • Have a Canadian presence.
  • Have a technology solution that addresses all or part of the problem statement defined in the call for Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Technology EOI document.
  • Be prepared to submit a written response to the Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Technology EOI for Project#1.
  • Be committed to submit a formal response to the Northern Ontario Residential Broadband RFS for Project#1 if selected as a candidate vendor as part of the Technology EOI evaluation process.
  • Be willing to work with the selected community from the Community EOI evaluation process for Project#1, to complete site surveys, understand location and addresses of each participating residence in the community, access existing and needed equipment rooms or buildings required for project equipment, provide information on potential tower or equipment sites required in the community, help assess need for permits, right-of-ways, etc. to prepare and submit a formal response to the Northern Ontario Residential Broadband RFS for Project#1.

Eligible technology applicants could be either of the following:

  • Small and Medium sized Enterprises (SMEs).
  • National and Multi-National Enterprises (NEs and MNEs).

Eligible technology applicants must:

  • Carry out their technology project in the Community EOI selected Northern Ontario community.
  • Be for-profit and have operations (manufacturing, R&D, etc.) in Ontario.
  • Produce proposals and plans to install, demonstrate, and/or implement the results of the project in Ontario and for the benefit of Ontario.
  • Be an innovation-driven business developing products or services addressing residential and middle kilometer broadband challenges or services accessed via the improved and cost-reduced residential broadband solution.
  • Have sound business plans and secure financial backing.
  • Be in good financial and reporting standing with CENGN.
  • Demonstrate the capacity to conduct contracted project activities. CENGN reserves the right to limit the number of applications from companies already benefiting from, or applying to, other CENGN program funding.

Eligible partners can be any of the following:

  • SMEs.
  • NEs and MNEs.
  • Publicly-funded post-secondary academic institutions.
  • Municipalities.
  • Indigenous communities.
  • Not-for-profit organizations.
  • Telephone companies, service providers, cable companies, ISPs, or WISPs.
  • Installation, or support contractors.
  • Economic development corporations.

D. RFS Eligibility

Eligible community

For a Northern Ontario community to participate in the RFS process, the community must:

  • Previously have submitted a response to the CENGN Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Community EOI for Project #1.
  • Have been selected and notified by CENGN as a selected Northern Ontario community as part of the Community EOI response evaluation process for Project #1.
  • Actively work with and support the selected vendors from the Technology EOI process for Project#1, to complete site surveys, understand location and addresses of each participating residence in the community, access existing and needed equipment rooms or buildings required for project equipment, provide information on potential tower or equipment sites required in the community, help access need for permits, right-of-ways, etc. to prepare and submit a formal response to the Northern Ontario Residential Broadband RFS for Project#1.

Eligible technology applicants and partners

For an equipment/technology vendor to participate in the RFS process, the vendor must:

  • Previously have submitted a response to the CENGN Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Technology EOI for Project #1.
  • Have been selected and notified by CENGN as an RFS candidate vendor as part of the EOI response evaluation process for Project #1.
  • Prepare and submit a formal response to the Northern Ontario Residential Broadband RFS for Project#1.

Eligible technology applicants could be either of the following:

  • SMEs.
  • NEs and MNEs.

Eligible technology and partners applicants must:

  • Carry out their technology project in the Community EOI selected Northern Ontario community
  • Be for-profit and have operations (manufacturing, R&D, etc.) in Ontario.
  • Aim to install, demonstrate and/or implement the results of the project in Ontario and for the benefit of Ontario.
  • Be an innovation-driven business developing products or services addressing residential broadband challenges or services accessed via the improved and cost-reduced residential or middle kilometer broadband solution.
  • Have sound business plans and secure financial backing.
  • Be in good financial and reporting standing with CENGN.
  • Demonstrate the capacity to conduct contracted project activities. CENGN reserves the right to limit the number of applications from companies already benefiting from, or applying to, other CENGN program funding.

Eligible partners can be any of the following:

  • SMEs.
  • NEs and MNEs.
  • Publicly-funded post-secondary academic institutions.
  • Municipalities.
  • Indigenous communities.
  • Not-for-profit organizations.
  • Telephone companies, service providers, cable companies, ISPs, or WISPs.
  • Installation, or support contractors.
  • Economic development corporations.

Eligible Technology Project Support Expectations:

  • Applicant may not submit multiple responses to this RFS.
  • Applicants and partners are required to have operations in Ontario and carry out their projects in Ontario
  • Minimum 1:1 cash match by applicants.
  • This project must be 3 to 6 months in duration.
  • This project is not intended for research to prove feasibility or basic technology research. Proposed products or technology for the project should be at Technology Readiness Level Scale 7 – 9 (7: operational environment functional demonstration, 9: Technology proven through successful deployment in an operational setting).
  • Typical project activities include: installation, demonstration, product/service validation, and testing.
  • Applicants and/or partners should demonstrate close collaboration and strong project commitment to ensure project start and completion target dates are achieved.
  • Eligible product equipment or technologies MUST include installation and demonstration of actual products that can be showcased in promotional material based on the successful execution of the project with demonstrable cost savings and significant performance improvement for residential broadband deployment within the selected community.

Eligible Expenses

  • All project activities must be performed within Ontario, unless written approval has been obtained from CENGN before submission of an application.
  • CENGN may only reimburse approved expenses that occurred after the RFS application approval date. The funding agreement must be executed by relevant parties before a project is activated. Unless activation is complete, project expenses are incurred at the risk of the participants.
  • Applicants must refer to the Eligible Expenses Guide for full details.

E. Evaluation and Project Activation

The CENGN Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Program is a discretionary, non-entitlement program with limited funding. CENGN will fund qualified projects with potential for the greatest economic benefits and contribution towards Northern Ontario residential broadband improvements. Not all eligible applicants may be funded.

All submissions to the RFS by eligible applicants will be assessed on their merit and undergo a review process, where the applications are assessed against program objectives and evaluation criteria. In order to ensure that all applications are evaluated in a fair and comprehensive manner, CENGN will utilize the following review entities in the process:

  • CENGN Review Committee made up of CENGN staff and management.
  • CENGN IRP made up of CENGN senior management.
  • ERP made up of independent reviewers with domain and sector expertise.

The EOI and RFS responses will be assessed based on the criteria shown below in ‘Evaluation Criteria’. 

The Community EOI application process has the following steps:

The Community EOI application process has the following steps:

  • The Community EOI is submitted by 5:00pm EST on March 29, 2019.
  • The Community EOI responses are validated by the CENGN Review Committee for:
    • Eligibility – see ‘Eligibility’ above.
    • Completeness – all sections of the Community EOI are completed
    • Ability – to host project and work with vendor.
  • Based on the CENGN Review Committee validation, the Community EOI is either accepted or rejected. Applicants with rejected submissions will be notified.
  • Upon acceptance of the EOI by the CENGN Review Committee, the Community EOI will be provided to both the CENGN Review Committee, and the ERP for detailed review.
  • Following completion of their review of the Community EOI submissions, the CENGN Review Committee will provide their input for consideration by the CENGN IRP in evaluating the viability and merit of the individual applications.
  • The ERP will evaluate the Community EOI response based on the criteria as shown below in ‘Evaluation Criteria’. All ERP members execute Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDA) prior to the EOI review.
  • The ERP will independently make a community selection recommendation to the CENGN IRP.
  • The CENGN IRP makes the final community selection decision(s).
  • The successful community applicant will be notified by CENGN, and informed that they will need to support, and work with, the vendor candidates that have been selected to respond to a subsequent call for a RFS. The community will also be informed who the selected vendor(s) are. Vendor contact information will be provided, so the community can be ready to work closely with the selected vendors when the RFS is published.
  • Community applicants who are NOT selected will be notified by CENGN. Feedback can be provided by a CENGN Senior Manager if requested.
  • Community applicants who are NOT selected for this project, may apply for subsequent CENGN Northern Ontario Residential Broadband projects as they are announced.
  • All reviewers are bound by NDAs. The final community selection decision is made by CENGN.

The Technology EOI application process has the following steps:

The RFS application process has the following steps:

The RFS Application Process has the following steps:

  • The Technology EOI was submitted by 5:00pm EST on March 29, 2019.
  • The Technology EOIs are reviewed by the CENGN Review Committee.
  • Upon approval of the Technology EOI submission, the technology applicant is invited to submit a RFS application.
  • A full RFS response is submitted by eligible applicants
  • The full RFS responses are validated by the CENGN Review Committee for: 
    • Eligibility -see ‘Eligibility’ above
    • Completeness – all sections of the RFS are completed
    • Financial compliance – funding ask does not exceed CENGN maximum ask limit
  • Based on the CENGN Review Committee validation, the RFS application is either accepted or rejected.  Applicants with rejected submissions will be notified.
  • Upon acceptance of the RFS by the CENGN Review Committee, the RFS will be provided to the ERP for detailed review.
  • The External Review Panel (ERP) will evaluate the RFS response based on the criteria as shown below in ‘Evaluation Criteria’.  All ERP members execute NDAs prior to the RFS review.
  • Those qualified RFS applicants and their partners (as previously determined by the CENGN Review Committee) will be invited to present their proposals in-person or by video conference to members of the following committees:
    • CENGN Review Committee.
    • CENGN Internal Review Panel (IRP).
    • External Review Panel (ERP).
  • Following the applicant and their partners making their presentation, the CENGN Review Committee, and the ERP, will provide their input for consideration by the CENGN IRP in evaluating the viability and merit of the individual applications.
  • The ERP will independently make a funding recommendation and vendor rating evaluation to the CENGN IRP.
  • The CENGN IRP makes the final funding decision(s).
  • Successful technology applicants will be notified by CENGN and provided an outline of conditions and additional information to activate the project.
  • Applicants who are NOT selected will be notified by CENGN. Feedback can be provided by a CENGN Senior Manager if requested.
  • All reviewers are bound by NDAs and NCAs. The final funding decision is made by CENGN.

Evaluation Criteria

The Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Program will use a dual EOI approach:

  • Community EOI – Invites any Northern Ontario community to apply with a Community EOI response to be considered as a host community for a project designed to address, or reduce the impact of, a pre-defined problem statement that the host community is facing which prevents or limits broadband residential access.
  • Technology EOI – Invites any eligible equipment/technology vendor to respond with a Technology EOI proposal to be considered as a candidate to supply equipment, support, and significant funding for a project designed to address, or reduce the impact of a pre-defined problem statement that a Northern Ontario community is facing which prevents or limits broadband residential access.

The Community EOI

A Community EOI will be sent to a wide range of Northern Ontario communities to offer them the opportunity to respond and show an EOI in being a host community for a Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Project. This Community EOI will primarily assess the needs of the community, how well their needs match the proposed problem statement, how able the community will be to work with the selected equipment/technology vendors, and what the community is able to do to support installation of infrastructure. The host community will also need to be able to provide approval of, and provide access to, sites within the community where they are willing to install and test a technology solution for the 3-6 month duration.

Community EOI Evaluation Criteria

The Community EOI applications are assessed on merit.  They are evaluated based on program objectives as well as assessment criteria, which include but are not limited to:

  • How closely the community problem statement matches the stated problem statement of the Community EOI.
  • Ability of the community to identify staffing within the community that can help selected vendors get all the consenting residences identified and located within the community.
  • Expertise and experience of the team members, clarity of roles and responsibilities, and evidence of collaboration with vendors and partners who work with Northern Ontario communities.
  • Willingness and ability to supply space within existing or planned secure, climate-controlled rooms or buildings
  • Clear indication and knowledge of potential regulatory, bylaws, or right of way restrictions that would delay the project, and ability to clear the issues or be able to get temporary waivers.
  • Strong willingness and plan, to work with a number of equipment/technology vendors
  • Overall quality and completeness of the application
  • Demonstrated experience working with vendors or local partners on residential broadband projects
  • Complete and well documented identification of the potential issues including regulatory, bylaw, right-of- way, or safety issues that need to be addressed to complete the project on time.
  • Overall quality and completeness of the application

In order to assist in the assessment of the Community EOIs, a pre-defined CENGN evaluation scoring system will be used by all reviewers.  

The Technology EOI

A call for Technology EOI responses will be sent to a wide range of equipment/technology vendors to offer them the opportunity to respond and show an EOI in proposing a technology solution to a host community for a residential or middle kilometer broadband technology project. This Technology EOI process will primarily assess how the technical solution proposed matches and addresses the defined Ontario community problem statement, the level of residential broadband performance offered, the cost reduction in equipment, installation, support, and/or operations costs of the proposed technology, and how well the vendor is prepared to work with the host community to prepare a high quality RFS response that will meet or exceed the needs of the host community selected. The vendor will also need to be able to minimize or reduce the expense to the community to host the project.

Technology EOI Evaluation Criteria

The Technology EOI applications are assessed on merit. They are evaluated based on program objectives as well as assessment criteria, which include but are not limited to:

  • Clarity of the challenges, merits of the proposed technical solution, and potential benefit/contribution to significantly improving business cases for residential broadband installations and upgrades for Northern Ontario communities.
  • Ability of the technology solution proposed to address residential broadband access challenges, significantly improve the business case through reduced equipment, installation, support and operations costs, while significantly improving broadband performance to meet or exceed a middle kilometer high capacity (10Gbps or higher) POP extension solution, capable of servicing remote residences with 50 Mbps download, and 10 Mbps upload broadband target performance per residence, through technical merit and novelty.
  • Expertise and experience of the team members, clarity of roles and responsibilities, and evidence of collaboration with their partners and other Northern Ontario communities.
  • Clarity, feasibility and appropriateness of the project plan and budget estimates.
  • A clear strategy and capacity to implement the proposed solution and bring the results to a target community.
  • Strong willingness and plan to work with the project host community.
  • Overall quality and completeness of the application.
  • Demonstrated experience providing residential broadband solutions in Northern Ontario communities.
  • Complete and well documented identification of the potential issues including regulatory, bylaw, right-of- way, or safety issues that need to be addressed to complete the project on time.

In order to assist in the assessment of the Technology EOIs, a pre-defined CENGN evaluation scoring system will be used by all reviewers.

Following a CENGN decision on the EOI candidate vendor selections, the applicant and partners (if contributing), will be informed of their approval to qualify as a candidate vendor to respond to the subsequent call for a RFS, when it is published some time following the announcements of the Community and Technology EOI decisions.

RFS Evaluation Criteria

The full RFS applications are assessed on merit.  They are evaluated based on program objectives as well as assessment criteria, which include but are not limited to:

  • Definition of the challenges, merits of the designed technical solution, and expected benefit/contribution to significantly improving business cases for residential broadband middle kilometer secondary POP extension installations and upgrades for Northern Ontario communities in general, and the host community in particular.
  • Clearly showing the expected and documented cost savings of the solution designed for the host community.
  • Demonstrating a high level of willingness to work closely with the host community.
  • Ability of the technology solution defined to address the specific middle kilometer residential broadband access challenges defined in the RFS, and showing the improved business case through reduced equipment, installation, support and operations costs, while significantly improving broadband capacity (10Gbps or higher) to meet or exceed the 50 Mbps download, and 10 Mbps upload target broadband internet performance per residence through technical merit and novelty.
  • Expertise and experience of the vendor team members, clarity of roles and responsibilities, and evidence of collaboration with their partners and other Northern Ontario communities.
  • Clarity, feasibility, and appropriateness of the project plan and budget costing.
  • Willingness to establish relationships with local partners to reduce installation/support costs and improve on-site support/response time.
  • A clear strategy and capacity to implement the proposed solution and promote the results with CENGN and the host community.
  • Demonstrated ability to work closely with the project host community during the preparation of the RFS response.
  • Overall quality and completeness of the RFS application.
  • Demonstrated experience providing residential broadband solutions in Northern Ontario communities.
  • Complete and well documented identification of actual issues in the host community including regulatory, bylaw, right-of-way, or safety issues that need to be addressed to complete the project on time.
  • Clear identification of new infrastructure requirements (including cost estimate) required in the community and a defined way to get them built either by the vendor or by the community.

In order to assist in the assessment of the RFSs, a pre-defined CENGN evaluation scoring system will be used by all reviewers.

Upon approval, the applicant and partners (if contributing) must execute a CENGN Funding Agreement and fulfill all requested reporting requirements within 30 days of approval of the award.

F. Reporting and Expense Claims

Interim Progress and Claims Report(s)

Monthly reports, including progress, project metrics, data and information requirements, proof of expenditures and partnership contributions, financial attestation, and a request for reimbursement must be submitted by the RFS applicant.

EOI Final Results and Claims Report

A final report, including progress, project metrics, data and information requirements, proof of expenditures and partnership contributions, financial attestation, and a request for reimbursement, is required at the end of the project. Thirty (30) days prior to the scheduled completion date, the applicant and all contributing partners will receive an email notification of the project end date from CENGN with a link to the Final Progress and Claim Report template document, should the parties wish to begin writing the final report and entering expense claim data.

Copies of detailed reporting instructions and templates will be sent to successful parties at the time of contracting. The report must be received and approved by CENGN prior to release of funds for eligible claims.

Note: Applicants MUST retain all proof of purchases, receipts, and other relevant documentation relating to eligible expenses. These should be included in all reporting.

  • Applicant MUST request project extensions in writing to CENGN. Extension requests must be made before the project end date.
  • Applicant can request early reporting by emailing your assigned CENGN project manager.
  • On the scheduled project completion date, the applicant and all contributing partners will receive another notification to complete the Final Project Progress and Claim Report from their assigned CENGN project manager.
  • Applicants and contributing partners must submit their Final Project and Claim Report within 30 days of project completion to be reimbursed for eligible expenses and maintain good financial standing with CENGN.

Project Change Requests

For any variances to the CENGN budget of $5,000 or greater (with no increase to overall budget), or extensions to the project end date, the applicant must submit a change request in writing to CENGN, prior to the project end date, that will be subject to CENGN approval.

G. How to Apply

Community EOI Applications

Only those community applicants that are Northern Ontario communities that are north or west of a line from Renfrew west to Huntsville, then west to Parry Sound are eligible to respond to the Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Community EOI.

Application to the Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Project #1 for a community contains two stages of activity and commitment:

Stage 1: Submit the Community EOI application, and then after be selected as the host community for the technology project.

Stage 2: A commitment to closely work with a number of candidate equipment/technology vendors (previously selected through the Technology EOI process) to support the individual vendor’s full RFS application. The RFS response will be focused to specifically address the selected host community’s residential broadband requirements.

The community will need to commit to providing assistance to the RFS candidate vendor(s) including the assistance items listed below (but not limited to):

  • Information on the specific number of residences requiring broadband access or upgrades to broadband access.
  • Locations and addresses of specific sites available for use in the project.
  • Availability of existing secure, climate-controlled equipment rooms or buildings for broadband project equipment.
  • Availability of serviced property for tower or new secure, climate-controlled equipment rooms or buildings.
  • Help in identifying zoning, bylaw, or right-of-way issues the community may face and may be able to help address to support the project.
  • Discussions on vendor/community cost sharing options for the project or following successful completion of the project.
  • Helping vendors connect with local installation or support partners in the community or nearby in the region.
  • Helping vendors connect with local service providers who may be interested in partnering during or following the project.

Following the selection of the vendor(s) by the CENGN IRP, the community will be notified which vendor(s) and applicable partner(s), if any, will be moving forward upon completion of the RFS process.

To discuss potential applications to this Community EOI program, please contact Kirby Koster: 

Kirby Koster
Senior Manager, Broadband Programs
Tel:  +1-613-963-1200 x334
Email: kirby.koster@cengn.ca

Technology EOI Applications

Only technology applicants that have a Canadian presence are eligible to respond to the Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Technology EOI. Partners can also be part of the application, but all funding and communications will be directly between CENGN and the technology applicant.

Application to the Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Program for a technology applicant contains two stages of activity and commitment:

Stage 1: Submit the Technology EOI Application

To provide a quality Technology EOI application, the candidate vendor must show a strong commitment and plans on how they will work closely with the selected host community (selected through the Community EOI process).

It will be important for the vendor to show how they plan to work with the host community to clearly identify needs and must include but is not limited to the following:

  • Requesting information on the specific number of residences requiring broadband access or upgrades to broadband access.
  • Determining approximate locations and addresses of expected residences willing to participate in the project.
  • Knowledge of the location and type of existing broadband POP in the community.
  • Which existing secure, climate-controlled equipment rooms or buildings for broadband project equipment may be available for use during the project.
  • Availability of serviced property for a tower or other outdoor installation, or new secure, climate-controlled equipment rooms or buildings that could be considered for the project.
  • Identification of potential zoning, bylaw, or right-of-way issues the vendor and community may need to address to support the project.
  • Proposed options of vendor/community cost sharing for the project or planned following successful completion of the project.
  • Identifying any local installation or support partners in the community, or nearby in the region, that the vendor could work with for the project or following successful completion of the project.
  • Identifying any local service providers, ISPs, or WISPs who may be interested in partnering during or following the project.
  • Identifying value-added partners that could be part of the proposed technology solution during or following the project.
  • Proposed options for expanding upon the project technology configuration following successful completion of the project.

Technology EOI applicants must submit responses by email no later than 5:00pm EST on March 29, 2019.

Ultimately based on Technology EOI submissions, vendor candidates are selected using evaluation input from the CENGN Review Committee and the ERP, by the CENGN IRP.

Stage 2: Submit the RFS Application

To discuss potential applications to this Technology EOI program, please contact Kirby Koster: 

Kirby Koster
Senior Manager, Broadband Programs
Tel:  +1-613-963-1200 x334
Email: kirby.koster@cengn.ca

RFS Applications

Only those technology applicants that have a Canadian presence are eligible to respond to the Northern Ontario Residential Broadband RFS. Partners can also be part of the application, but all funding and communications will be directly between CENGN and the technology applicant.

To be eligible to respond to the call for RFS technology applicants must have:

  • Previously submitted a valid on-time response to the call for a Technology EOI for the CENGN Northern Ontario Residential Broadband Program.
  • Been awarded by CENGN the right to respond to the Northern Ontario Residential Broadband RFS.

Application to the CENGN Northern Ontario Residential Broadband RFS contains two stages:

Stage 1: Submit the Technology EOI Application

Then once selected as a candidate vendor as result of the Technology EOI Evaluation process, by the CENGN IRP, the vendor needs to work with the selected community (as announced by CENGN as a result of the Community EOI evaluation and selection process) to produce a quality RFS response tailored specifically to address the needs of the community.

Stage 2: Full RFS Application as detailed below:

To provide a quality RFS application, the candidate vendor must demonstrate a strong level of cooperation in working with the selected host community (previously selected through the Community EOI process) while putting together the full RFS response, which will include a technical network design specifically to address the community’s residential broadband requirements, including the following details delivered with help from the community but not limited to:

  • Details on the specific number of residences requiring broadband access or upgrades to broadband access in the host community.
  • Specific locations and addresses of consenting residences willing to participate in the project.
  • Which existing secure, climate-controlled equipment rooms or buildings for broadband project equipment will be used in the project.
  • Specific serviced properties that will be used for a tower or other outdoor installation, or new secure, climate-controlled equipment rooms or buildings that will be used for the project.
  • Identification of, and a plan to address, zoning, bylaw, or right-of-way issues the vendor and community will need to address to support the technology project.
  • Agreed vendor/community cost sharing for the project or planned following successful completion of the project.
  • Identifying local installation or support partners in the community, or nearby in the region, that the vendor will work with for the project or following successful completion of the project.
  • Identifying any local service providers, ISPs, or WISPs who the vendor will be partnering with during or following the project.
  • Identification of any value-added partners that will be part of the solution during or following the project.
  • Detailed proposals for expanding upon the project technology configuration following successful completion of the project.

Once the candidate Technology RFS responses have been submitted, the responses will be reviewed by the CENGN Review Committee and the ERP, who will send their evaluation input for consideration to the CENGN IRP on the rating of the vendors for the project (see Section D for details on the evaluation process).

Following the selection of the vendor(s) by the CENGN IRP, the host community will be notified which vendor(s) and applicable partner(s) were selected that will be moving forward upon completion of the RFS evaluation process.

Applicants whose Technology EOI submissions are selected by the CENGN EOI IRP will be invited to submit a Full RFS Application to CENGN. Full applications must be submitted to CENGN by the Full RFS Application intake date. A sample Full RFS Application Form can be viewed for informational purposes only. Applications are only accepted by email.

Expected timelines for these steps are outlined in Section G Timelines.

Successful applicants and their partners must execute CENGN’s standard Funding Agreement within 30 days of notification of award. A copy of the Funding Agreement can be provided for your reference.

To discuss potential applications to this program, please contact Kirby Koster: 

Kirby Koster
Senior Manager, Broadband Programs
Tel:  +1-613-963-1200 x334
Email: kirby.koster@cengn.ca

H. Timelines

EOI Applications

EOI Submission Deadline: March 29, 2019
EOI Decision Date: April 30, 2019
EOI Results and Invitation for Full RFS Response: April 30, 2019 

RFS Applications

RFS Submission Deadline: May 31, 2019
RFS Invitation for Presentation: June 14, 2019
RFS Decision Date: June 30, 2019

Note: Program intakes are on-going until December 31, 2019, or when all funds are committed. The timelines above will be updated following each round.

I. Downloads & Inquiries

  • CENGN Funding Agreement. TBA
  • Eligible Expenditures Guide. TBA

For inquiries related to application initiation, eligibility, contracting, and funding disbursement inquiries please contact:   

Kirby Koster
Senior Manager, Broadband Programs
Tel:  +1-613-963-1200 x334
Email: kirby.koster@cengn.ca

For general inquiries about the website and RFS application form, please contact: info@cengn.ca