Nokia Canada, the federal government, Ontario government and City of Ottawa have announced plans to turn the company’s Ottawa facility into a research and development technology centre. The project will also receive $72-million in total funding from the three levels of government.

Nokia Canada plans to begin site construction in 2023 and expects to open the new facility in 2026. This project will transform Nokia Canada’s 26-acre campus at the Kanata North Business Park into a sustainable, accessible mixed-use corporate, residential and commercial hub. Nokia Canada plans to invest CAD 340+ million in labs and equipment, labour, and operating costs between 2023 and 2027.

“Today’s announcement reinforces Nokia’s commitment to the Canadian market, where we have invested $1.4 billion in R&D over the past five years. Nokia’s R&D hub will generate net-new Canadian IP and bring innovative advanced telecommunications and cyber security technologies to market, helping us achieve our goal of improving people’s lives in Canada and across the world,” said Jeffrey Maddox, President of Nokia Canada.

The Government of Canada is finalizing plans to provide up to CAD 40 million via its Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF) and the Government of Ontario, through Invest Ontario, will provide CAD 30 million to the project. These contributions will support the long-term capability of Nokia, Canada and Ontario in cyber security, R&D, and next-gen technology, including 6G, while delivering high-paying jobs in construction and technology.

“The project we’re announcing will help connect Canadians to the jobs of today and tomorrow. It will bring economic benefits to the National Capital Region and stimulate Canada’s tech ecosystem. This is about building a strong economy and a better future for everyone.” said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

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“This monumental investment from Nokia shows once again that there is no better place for businesses to grow and jobs to be created than here in Ontario. We are proud to work alongside our partners to secure hundreds more in demand, high skill jobs for the Ottawa region and we welcome this long term commitment from Nokia to our province, and our workers,” said Ontario Premier Doug Ford.

The City of Ottawa, through Hydro Ottawa, will make a capital contribution of CAD 2 million for control system upgrades.

“I want to thank Nokia, as well as our federal and provincial governments, for investing in our community and growing our local economy. Not only will this see more cutting-edge R&D taking place in Ottawa; it will lead to a more sustainable mixed-use campus for Nokia, while creating hundreds of new jobs and co-op/intern positions. This is a good day for Ottawa and Kanata North.” said Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson.

The new Ottawa facility will support Nokia’s global target of 50 per cent greenhouse gas emission reduction by 2030 by implementing sustainable technologies, including water side heat recovery, air side heat and energy recovery, water side free cooling, and rainwater harvesting.

The transformed campus is expected to enable Nokia Canada to grow its Ontario-based team by more than 340 positions to 2,500, 2,160 of which will be based in Ottawa, increase co-op and intern positions for university and college students in STEM fields by 100 to 400 per year, and introduce new, cutting-edge lab space and equipment.

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Featured image: Rendering of Nokia’s proposed 26-acre research and development centre in Kanata, Ontario. (Nokia)

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