Cornwall Ontario Chamber of Commerce & Mayor Disconnected From Reality? Poor Intercity Transit & Internet Issues Ignored – Editorial by Jamie Gilcig

CFN – If you don’t drive a car or are on a fixed income I think this editorial is something that truly is something you can relate to.

Cornwall Ontario is a lovely city right smack in a great location.

We’re a waterfront community.  We have an International Bridge to the US.  We are on the 401; the most trafficked highway in Canada.

We are less than an hour away from Montreal, and a little bit more than that to our Nation’s capital, Ottawa.

However something odd has been going on in Cornwall.   VIA Rail has cut service, and there is no bus station or service within the city.  There is a drop point outside of the city with no local bus connection.  In other words if you want to take a bus to Ottawa you have to take a cab to Highway 138 to catch the bus.

If you have medical tests or a need to use this bus that’s over a $10 cab ride to and from.   Does that make sense for a city of almost 50,000 people in its location?

City Hall and civic leaders have done and said little to alleviate it.   One city councilor, Elaine MacDonald is trying to lead a charge about VIA rail, but that just shows how disconnected she is.  With the pensions the good councilor has she can afford VIA Rail.   Most on fixed incomes can’t; especially if they need to travel regularly.

Mega Bus offers discounted tickets for example that would cost less to travel to Toronto that it’d cost in cab fare to the “local” stop!

With new shopping centres and distribution centres opening how do we attract new residents with this sort of situation.   I myself floated an idea that Councilor Dupelle has brought to the table of contacting the bus companies and having them use the Civic Complex as a defacto bus station.

Currently Cornwall Transit stops there. During open hours there would be a warm place to protect people from the cold and there’s a ticket office in the Civic Complex as well.

And it also would show new comers and visitors a lovely image of Cornwall as they step off the bus.

Internet service is a hot topic button right now here in Canada.   Here in Cornwall the big issue is that because of the monopolies given out and lack of consumer protect residents of Cornwall essentially have the only option of using slower speed service 5-6 MPS.

There are even “Unlimited” bandwidth options at these slow speeds.   However if you want faster service your only option is Cogeco Cable.   The Turbo 14 package with them if you agree to a contract or bundle can be as low as about $41.95 before HST.

However there is a bandwidth cap.   If you don’t want cable or phone service and just use the internet as many Canadians are now starting to do; especially as the new TV’s at stores are “Smart” ie have built in WI FI that allows viewers to access the net you are essentially being penalized.

Cogeco’s plan ends up nailing you for an extra $50 per month.   If you visit the Cogeco website they have other plans available with even higher speeds and better band width for less; but, and that’s a big but, they are not available in downtown Cornwall.

So people like me, who don’t want other services and like the options, quality and choice of the net end up with bills over $100 per month.

Is that good for Cornwall and its residents?  It’s good for Bell and Cogeco; that we know.

The question our leaders should be asking and demanding to know the answer to is why is the Government of Canada allowing this?  If Bell and Cogeco can’t offer services that clearly they offer to other cities why not let other companies into this region to do so?

Simple enough question.

Where are our leaders?  With both the Mayor and President of Chamber of Commerce not being computer savvy is it any wonder?

It’s time for our civic leaders to connect with reality and the citizens of this city.

You may post your comments below.

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Best Western Cornwall


  1. There is always

    They take a long time to set up or if you need to make changes. But once it’s set up, it’s beautiful. No contracts if you purchase your equipment, they have truly unlimited cap. I use them for my business, never had a problem with them. Never any extra fees either. I haven’t experienced them throttling service either, not like the other 2 mentioned in this article.

  2. Author

    Yes Clifford, but they also only offer speeds of up to 6 MPS. There currently is only one company offering speeds higher than what Primus does; which is essentially resell Bell service, and that’s Cogeco. Roger’s can but isn’t allowed to because of the CRTC.

  3. We certainly need a bus depot where people can purchase tickets and sit inside out of the elements to wait for their bus to arrive. Seems like we took one huge leap backwards by shutting down the Tollgate Depot? Why did this happen? The current situation makes it difficult for people who may wish attend conferences or events from out of town?

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