Rogers Communications is to acquire BAI Communications’ Canadian operations for an undisclosed sum, a move that will enable the operator to build a 5G network across Toronto’s entire subway system.

In a statement, Rogers explained BAI Canada – a network infrastructure provider – has held the exclusive rights to build government agency the Toronto Transit Commission’s mobile network since 2012, and through the acquisition it was now able to undertake the investment to build out 5G.

In addition to 5G, Rogers said it would also ensure access to emergency services across the entire subway system.

Currently, users are able to call emergency services only where a mobile network signal exists, such as on station platforms, concourses and around 25 per cent of tunnels. The operator pledged it would “quickly address gaps in the busiest and most critical sections” of the subway system.

Two years
On the wider 5G rollout, the build will take approximately two years to complete because of limited resources, and Rogers will work on a phased deployment, focusing on network improvements and expansion.

Rogers has other initiatives to deliver mobile services to underground transit riders, including an agreement to deliver connectivity across the full SkyTrain system in Vancouver and deals with other operators in 68 metro stations.

The deal for BAI Canada should be completed in two weeks, subject to closing conditions, Rogers added.