The BDUK projects have had a lot of criticism but they are progressing and another county has signed its contract with BT, today saw Dorset County Council sign a £31.75 million deal that should see a mainly FTTC based roll-out make fibre based broadband available to 97% of homes and businesses in the county.
The £31.75 million is made up of £12.87m from BT, Dorset councils £9.44m, BDUK, £9.44m and there is another £1.3m to help ensure benefits are realised, which we believe means money that will be spent promoting the new services to people and businesses and digital inclusion training.
Dorset is not fairing too badly with the commercial roll-out already reaching over half the county, 190,000 properties have access to the GEA fibre products from Openreach and they plan to push this to 260,000 properties by the end of Spring 2014. The 97% target will not happen overnight and the press release suggests a timeline of around three and a half years.
What happens next:
- Contract signed 10 July
- Six to nine month mobilisation period
- joint project team to be established
- surveying for rollout
- working with stakeholders to ensure they understand their role in ensuring a smooth rollout
- End 2013/early 2014
- announcement of first cabinets ready for service
- Implementation in phases
- Individual communities will be told it’s coming six months before delivery
- communities will see surveying, new cabinet installation etc
- communities will have the chance to find out what broadband can do for them etcTimeline from BT/Dorset press release
The expectation at this time is that while 97% will be connected to a FTTC or FTTP based solution (yes some native FTTP may be deployed) that 95% will get connection speeds of at least 24 Mbps. The difference of 2% still seeing a significant uplift in speeds from their existing services. The remaining 3% of premises where any form of fibre based connection is not viable under the project should see some benefit from the project as the aim is to ensure that they can get broadband speeds of at least 2 Mbps.
For more information visit www.dorsetforyou.com/superfast.