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ARCHIVED - Telecom Decision CRTC 2010-94

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Ottawa, 17 February 2010

See also : 2010-94-1

 

Code relief for area code 819 in Quebec

  File number: 8698-C12-200908056
  In this decision, the Commission determines that relief for area code 819 is to be provided by overlaying the area served by area code 819 with new area code 873, starting on 19 March 2011.
 

Introduction

1.

On 28 April 2009, the Canadian Numbering Administrator (CNA) informed the Commission that the results of a general numbering resource utilization forecast indicated that area code 819 in Quebec would exhaust by February 2015.

2.

The Commission subsequently issued Establishment of a CISC ad hoc committee for area code relief planning for area code 819 in Quebec, Telecom Notice of Consultation CRTC 2009-308, 28 May 2009, in which it established a relief planning committee (RPC) to examine options for providing relief for area code 819 in Quebec.

3.

The most recent numbering resource utilization forecast indicates that area code 819 will now exhaust by August 2014.
 

The RPC's submission

4.

The RPC filed a planning document and a relief implementation plan with the Commission, both dated 24 November 2009. In the planning document, the RPC evaluated six relief options for area code 819, including variations on geographic splits and a boundary extension overlay.

5.

Based on its analysis of the various relief options, the RPC recommended that
 

a) code relief be provided by a distributed overlay of a new area code on the area served by area code 819, with an effective date of 1 June 2013;

 

b) area code 873 be reserved as the most suitable area code for code relief in the area served by area code 819;

 

c) if a jeopardy condition1 is declared, (i) the seven central office (CO) codes set aside for initial code assignment for carriers already providing service in the 819 area be made available for general assignment prior to relief being implemented, and (ii) the ten CO codes set aside for initial code assignment for new entrants be made available only to new entrants prior to relief being implemented;

 

d) in the event of a jeopardy condition, CO codes 257, 273, 368, 387, 431, 468, 487, 584, 742, 851, 871, and 942, which correspond to future Canadian area codes, be made assignable; and

 

e) in an extreme jeopardy condition, nine CO codes corresponding to current neighbouring area codes (249, 343, 418, 450, 579, 613, 581, 705, and 709) be made assignable in certain portions of area code 819, with Commission staff approval.

6.

In the relief implementation plan, the RPC included the detailed implementation measures and plans to provide relief in accordance with the recommendations set out in the planning document. The relief implementation plan also included a network implementation plan and a consumer awareness program as attachments.

7.

The RPC estimated that the next area code exhaust date in this area would be after 2052.

8.

The Commission considers that the RPC's planning document and relief implementation plan raise the following issues:
 

I. What relief method should be used and when should it be implemented?

 

II. Which area code should be reserved?

 

III. How should potential future area codes be treated in area code 819?

 

IV. Should the Commission approve the relief implementation plan?

I. What relief method should be used and when should it be implemented?

9.

The Commission notes that overlaying a new area code on the area served by area code 819 would not require subscribers to change phone numbers. Therefore, the Commission considers that this would be the least disruptive option for subscribers when compared with the other options evaluated by the RPC. The Commission also notes that this method would cost less to implement than other options evaluated by the RPC and would provide long-term relief.

10.

The Commission notes that area code overlays require 10-digit local dialing to ensure proper call routing between the area codes. However, this is not an issue in area code 819 because 10-digit local dialing was implemented on 21 October 2006. Therefore, there is no need for a permissive dialing period prior to implementation of the new area code overlay.

11.

Accordingly, the Commission determines that the area served by area code 819 is to be overlaid with a new area code, effective 1 June 2013.
 

II. Which area code should be reserved?

12.

The Commission considers that it is a good assignment practice to use an area code that has not been used as a CO code within the area to be served, or in areas adjacent to it, because this reduces the potential for customer confusion when dialing. As area code 873 meets this criterion, the Commission determines that it is to be reserved for use as the new overlay area code for area code 819.
 

III. How should potential future area codes be treated in area code 819?

 

CO codes for initial code assignments

13.

The Commission notes that in Telecom Notice of Consultation 2009-308, it set aside for initial code assignment seven CO codes for carriers already providing service in the 819 area and ten CO codes for new entrants.

14.

The Commission notes the RPC's recommendation that if a jeopardy condition is declared in area code 819, the seven CO codes set aside for existing carriers should be made available for general assignment during the jeopardy period, and the ten CO codes set aside for new entrants should be made available only to new entrants prior to relief being implemented.

15.

The Commission agrees with this recommendation and determines that if a jeopardy condition is declared, these CO codes are to be made available for assignment as proposed.
 

CO codes that correspond to future area codes

16.

The Commission notes the RPC's recommendation that CO codes 257, 273, 368, 387, 431, 468, 487, 584, 742, 851, 871, and 942, which correspond to future Canadian area codes, be made available in the event of a jeopardy condition.

17.

The Commission considers that these CO codes should only be used as a last resort and that they should be the last CO codes assigned in area code 819. The Commission therefore determines that the CNA is to protect these CO codes and make them available for assignment only if area code 819 exhausts before the relief date. The Commission further determines that these CO codes should remain unassignable in both the new area code and area code 819 after code relief has been implemented.

18.

The Commission determines that in an extreme jeopardy condition, CO codes 249, 343, 418, 450, 579, 613, 581, 705, and 709, which correspond to current neighbouring area codes, may be assigned as CO codes in certain portions of area code 819 after consultation with Commission staff.
 

IV. Should the Commission approve the relief implementation plan?

19.

The Commission notes that the relief implementation plan includes a detailed schedule, a network implementation plan, and a consumer awareness plan. The Commission further notes that the recommendations and milestones included in the relief implementation plan are in accordance with the planning document and the Commission's determinations in this decision.

20.

Accordingly, the Commission approves the relief implementation plan.
  Secretary General
  This document is available in alternative format upon request, and may also be examined in PDF format or in HTML at the following Internet site: http://www.crtc.gc.ca.
  Footnote:
1    According to the Canadian NPA Relief Planning Guidelines, a jeopardy condition is declared when the forecast and/or actual demand for CO codes exceeds the available supply of CO codes before relief is implemented, or the implementation time frame is shorter than 36 months and no relief plan is yet in place.