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Bell announces additional measures for rapid access to its support structures

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Centre of Excellence will accelerate rollout of high-speed Internet projects throughout Québec

MONTRÉAL, Dec. 18, 2020 /CNW/ - Bell today announced new milestones in its action plan to simplify the process for service providers requesting access to aerial infrastructures in Québec while continuing to ensure the safety of workers and the public.

Service providers will now be able to conduct their own structural surveys and carry out work as soon as their own engineers have confirmed safety standards have been met, followed by inspections by Bell network professionals to ensure full standards compliance. These changes will accelerate access to thousands of poles throughout the province more quickly. Bell expects to sign agreements with service providers as early as January.

Bell is also announcing the establishment of a Centre of Excellence to share best practices with service providers, improve communications through a dedicated technical and decision-making resource person assigned to projects, and provide a toll-free 1-800 line for assistance.

"Bell continues its leadership in communications innovation in Québec with these new measures announced today, including the creation of our Centre of Excellence, which will accelerate the delivery of broadband network access to people across Québec," said Karine Moses, Bell's Vice Chair, Québec. "I am proud of the Bell team's work to create a concrete action plan to improve access to our structures and help to ensure the maximum number of our citizens have access to high-speed Internet in the very near future."

"The new initiatives put in place by Bell and Hydro-Québec and the discussions within the Ministry of Economic Development and Innovation's Coordination Table have considerably accelerated the deployment of our high-speed Internet project in the Autray Regional County Municipality," said David Morin, Information Technology Director for Autray Regional County Municipality. "With the active collaboration of Bell teams, we were able to expedite nearly 25% of our project in just a few weeks. We are very optimistic about the continuation of our project in 2021."

The new measures are part of a process initiated earlier this year with the Coordination Table co-created by Bell, Hydro-Québec, Telus and the Ministry of Economic Development and Innovation. As part of this same action plan, Bell and Hydro-Québec earlier announced a series of measures that are already accelerating a significant number of projects.

About Bell
With more than 22 million consumer and business connections, Bell is the largest communications company in Canada. It provides advanced broadband wireless, TV, Internet and business communications services throughout the country. Bell Media is Canada's premier multimedia company with leading assets in television, radio, out of home and digital media. Founded in Montréal in 1880, Bell is wholly owned by BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE: BCE). To learn more, please visit Bell.ca or BCE.ca.

The Bell Let's Talk initiative promotes Canadian mental health with national awareness and anti-stigma campaigns like Bell Let's Talk Day and significant Bell funding of community care and access to the latter, research and workplace leadership initiatives nationwide. To learn more, please visit Bell.ca/LetsTalk.

Media inquiries:

Caroline Audet

Investor inquiries:

Thane Fotopoulos

SOURCE Bell Canada


View original content: http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/December2020/18/c4232.html