Wakefield is to become one of the world’s best-connected communities after CityFibre, the UK’s largest independent full fibre platform, announced a multi-million investment in its digital infrastructure.
Work to bring full fibre connectivity within reach of almost every home and business in the city is underway as the full fibre infrastructure builder breaks ground on the £27m project. Construction on the citywide full fibre network has begun in Lupset and is being delivered by O'Connor Utilities (OCU) on behalf of CityFibre. The team will use a range of construction methods while working in close partnership with Wakefield Council and local communities to deliver a fast rollout while minimising potential disruption.
Each area will usually take a few weeks to complete, however, construction teams will typically only be outside each home for two to three days and CityFibre will be in touch by mail ahead of any work starting.
The overall project is expected to reach completion by 2024 and the first services will go live for people to take advantage of much sooner. As the network is completed in each neighbourhood, internet service providers (ISPs) will ‘light them up’ with some of the fastest and best value broadband packages available in the country.
In Wakefield, services will be available from an increasing range of broadband providers. Across the UK, CityFibre is already working with launch partner Vodafone to deliver next generation broadband services, as well as TalkTalk, Zen and other providers.
As City Manager, Steve Moore will lead the delivery of the Wakefield project. He will be responsible for ensuring works are delivered efficiently and considerately, while also acting as the main point of contact for all stakeholders.
Steve said: “I’m immensely excited and proud to see work getting underway in Wakefield today. We’re already making tremendous progress across Yorkshire and this is the start of an exciting new chapter for the city and its digital ambitions. It’s important to remember that any short-term disruption will pay off tremendously in the long-term - once the network’s built, it will serve the community’s connectivity needs for decades to come.”
Full fibre networks, unlike copper-based ‘fibre broadband’ services available today, use 100% fibre optic cables to carry data at light speed all the way from the home to the point of connection. This gives users speeds of up to 1,000 Mbps for upload and download (up to 1,000 Mbps), near limitless bandwidth and connectivity users can depend on.
A full fibre connection also goes far beyond simply enabling access to the latest entertainment at lightning speed. As an essential digital utility, full fibre boosts households and businesses alike, with experts saying it will drive a range of economic benefits, such as making us more productive and innovative.
Cllr Michelle Collins, Wakefield Council’s Cabinet Member for Resources, said: “Having a fast and reliable internet connection is vital for so many of our residents and local businesses, at a time when we are more reliant on the internet than ever before.
“That’s why we’re extremely pleased to see this investment programme get underway in our district, which will in time enable all our communities to access the economic and social benefits that come with good internet access.”
CityFibre is bringing full fibre connectivity within reach of up to 8 million homes in towns and cities across the UK as part of its up to £4 billion Gigabit City Investment Programme. Find out more at www.cityfibre.com
Residents interested in giving their home broadband a boost can find out more about the build and register their interest at www.cityfibre.com/residential.