Press Releases

ORION upgrades enhance access to high-capacity connectivity

Toronto (December 10, 2021) – ORION is pleased to announce network capacity upgrades to improve service for high-traffic routes. Recent upgrades were made to enhance network speeds, double available bandwidth and improve scalability at points of presence (PoPs) in Kingston, St. Catherines, Hamilton, Oakville, Oshawa, Belleville, Orillia and North Bay. 

These upgrades improve network performance for the 32 higher education institutions (serving up to 900,000 students) who directly connect into the eight PoPs. The most significant effect will be for research and education activities undertaken by institutions connected to the upgraded PoPs. This includes important collaboration projects such as Scholars Portal, the Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging, as well as advanced research computing facilities including SciNet, Centre for Advanced Computing, SHARCNET and HPC4Health. ORION’s core network, which supports members across Canada’s National Research and Education Network, will benefit when transporting data via ORION.  

These upgrades were part of ORION’s annual network architecture planning to identify network links and PoPs in need of upgrades to support higher bandwidth and capacity. These links include London to Toronto, Toronto to Ottawa and Peterborough to Sudbury. This project enhances those links, including all PoPs, improving capacity, ensuring the network continues to meet community needs and enhancing access to high-quality connectivity. This project, which was jointly funded by CANARIE and ORION, is part of ORION’s larger network improvement strategy which was informed by our community. 


This upgrade allows us to continue to bring modernized, global digital resources to our classrooms to further enhance the teaching and learning experiences for our students and educators.

— Andy Bischoff, York Region District School Board

This PoP upgrade and ORION’s continued efforts to create a more robust network allows our students and faculty to thrive. The better connectivity provided through the upgrade is foundational to the establishment of an environment that now allows for the addition of capabilities that were not previously available to our learning and research communities. This is more than welcome to the start of another school year.”

— Marie-Claude Arguin, Chief Information Officer, Queen’s University

ORION sustains and constantly advances Ontario’s dedicated research and education network as a platform for innovation. We protect its value and performance, driven by world-class standards and an ambition for equitable access. Our ongoing collaboration with and funding support from CANARIE contributes to our progress.

— David Smith, Chief Technology Officer, ORION

This investment benefits all of Canada’s National Research and Education Network. We’re delighted that students and researchers throughout Canada and around the world will also benefit from dependable, resilient, ultra-high-speed connectivity when they collaborate with the 900,000 students and researchers in this region.

— Mark Wolff, Chief Technology Officer, CANARIE

About ORION:

ORION is a not-for-profit organization supporting Ontario’s progress with essential digital infrastructure. Since 2001, we’ve facilitated new discoveries by connecting research and education institutions, regions, and people across the province, enabling collaboration, learning, forging partnerships, and providing our community with the digital tools and expertise they need to make the world a better place. 

Read more about ORION at

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