Work to transform Portsmouth into one of the world’s best digitally connected cities is now well underway #GigabitPompey

Portsmouth is celebrating a major milestone in its digital transformation with work now well underway to build a citywide full fibre network that will reach almost every home and business in the city.

This £32m private investment from CityFibre will futureproof Portsmouth’s digital infrastructure and provide residents and businesses with access to reliable, high speed and high capacity digital services.

According to research from economic consultancy Regeneris, such an investment could have a major impact on the city over the next 15 years. It shows that up to £76m could be added to the value of local homes, while Smart City initiatives could add as much as £54m locally. Access to full fibre could also unlock £36m in business productivity and innovation, while a further £18m in growth could be driven from new business start-ups, with enhanced connectivity making it easier and less expensive to set up base and run efficiently.

The full fibre network is not yet live, but once activated, 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, and TalkTalk is expected to join the network soon.

Construction work has officially commenced in the Southsea area with CCN Communications Ltd delivering the construction programme on CityFibre’s behalf. The company is using modern build techniques to deploy the network quickly and with due observation of social distancing guidelines.

CityFibre is also working closely with Portsmouth’s communities and stakeholders, including through its patronage of Shaping Portsmouth, to manage disruption and ensure a fast and successful roll-out.  Residents are being kept informed by mailings ahead of works in their streets.

Speaking of the project, Lucy Cooper, CityFibre’s City Manager for Portsmouth, said: “For people across Portsmouth, their digital future is just around the corner. Work is now well underway and that is something to be celebrated. Full fibre broadband will help households access all the latest entertainment at lightning speed, but the benefits are far deeper than that – from enabling smart home technology to giving people the freedom to work from home with ease.”

“The investment also comes at a critical time for Portsmouth’s forward-thinking business community. Next generation full fibre connectivity can drive innovation and productivity, ultimately giving businesses the platform they need to realise their growth ambitions. And it won’t just improve business locally – it will also help businesses take their products or services to an international audience.”

As City Manager, Lucy will be responsible for ensuring a state-of-the-art full fibre network is implemented with minimal disruption, while delivering maximum benefit for the wider community. She will also serve as the lead point-of-contact for all city stakeholders and will be a key advocate of the benefits that a full fibre network will bring to Portsmouth’s residents and businesses.

Councillor Tom Wood, Cabinet Member for Resources at Portsmouth City Council, commented: “CityFibre’s commitment to investing in Portsmouth will give the city a state-of-the-art infrastructure to serve businesses and residents for years to come. The gigabit technology, and its faster internet speeds, will bring massive benefits to our communities while also helping to grow the local economy, making it more resilient and dynamic.”

Councillor Steve Pitt, Portsmouth City Council’s Cabinet Member for Culture, Leisure & Economic Development, added: “CityFibre’s work is a huge boost to efforts in attracting new businesses to Portsmouth as well as supporting those already here to grow. The city has so much going for it as a business location and having the full fibre network makes it the ideal place for any company to prosper.”

Currently, fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) is only available to around 12 per cent of premises across the UK. It is revered as the best in connectivity for its speed, near unlimited bandwidth and reliability. By using fibre optic cables for every stage of the connection from the customer’s home or business to the Internet, users will be offered a significantly superior and more reliable broadband service, capable of Gigabit speeds (1,000 Mbps).

If residents are interested in full fibre broadband, they can pre-register interest with CityFibre and will receive information when services are available, To pre-register interest, visit: cityfibre.com/residential

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