Telus Investing $3 Billion in B.C. Projects

by Jordan Richardson on March 5, 2012

Thanks to a $3 billion investment in British Columbia, Telus says that it expects to create some 1,300 jobs in the province.

Telus president and CEO Darren Entwistle announced the investment on Friday, noting that the cash will be spent over the next three years and will include the $750 million Telus Garden development that features 53 storeys of residential condos and 24 storeys of office space in downtown Vancouver. The project is expected to take three years to complete and should generate 500 jobs in construction.

Telus had the project approved by Vancouver city council last week and was given special permission to build condos in a part of town that was zoned as non-residential. Telus agreed to contribute to some downtown amenities, sealing the deal.

The company says that Telus Garden will be constructed to the highest environmental standards, including the use of solar panels and rainwater used for bathrooms and garden irrigation. The development should use 30 percent less energy than comparable developments of the same size, says Telus.

Entwistle outlined other Telus investments in the province, including the extension of its LTE smartphone network to reach 90 percent of B.C.’s population by the end of 2012. In this year alone, Telus will be investing some $90 million on LTE.

Also on the agenda is the addition of 800 jobs to help bolster Telus’ Optik TV and wireless services. The jobs will be fields like customer service and infrastructure development.

Another $350 million will be spent on extending high speed Internet to 97 percent of British Columbians, rolling out fibre optics to 450 B.C. schools and upgrading wireless coverage to 1,700 kilometres of remote highways across the province. A data centre in Kamloops is also on tap.

These investments add to Telus’ impressively growing portfolio in Western Canada and should help expand the company’s footprint in the province of B.C. Telus recently acquired Wolf Medical in a move that is expected to lead to “Telus Physician Solutions,” a venture designed to solidify the company’s presence in the health sector.

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