Conservationists battle BT over fibre broadband cabinets in Brighton
BT have received objections to the siting of various road-side boxes to be installed by Openreach to deliver fibre-to-the-cabinet (FTTC) broadband services in the Brighton and Hove area. Conservation groups have objected to the location of where some of these green boxes are to be located, and this is not the first time that Openreach have come across this problem. In both Muswell Hill and St Albans conservation groups stepped in to request better locations be found for the green boxes that BT were proposing.
Some cabinets in Brighton and Hove have already been approved whilst a large number are still in the planning process. The full list can be found at theargus.co.uk. The objections are not a dismissal that the new technology needs to be installed, but instead are a proposal that better locations be found. The green boxes to be installed are similar to existing street side cabinets but are taller and wider than existing units, with some models being 1.6m tall.
"There is no doubt we have to move with the times and that we need super-fast broadband, especially in a vibrant city like Brighton.
Having said that, I'm not convinced the solution put forward by BT is the right and proper one. We are not saying no – we just want to be consulted."Stephen Neiman, The Regency Society
Thankfully, BT are responsive on these kinds of issues, even though they deem the equipment being installed as "essential".
"We do fully appreciate the concerns of the conservation and amenities committees regarding the siting of our super-fast broadband cabinets in certain parts of the city.
We are committed to working with local authorities to minimise the visual impact of the new street cabinets, and have done this successfully in other conservation areas."BT Spokeswoman
Hopefully this won't produce any delays to the roll-out of fibre in Brighton which is expected to go live in December 2010.
Update - 07/06/2010
A map showing the locations of the cabinets in question can be found here.