BT finds 'novel' way to take broadband to inner city not-spots
Residents of a central London housing development are benefitting from a partnership between the property’s developers, agents and BT Openreach.
A fibre broadband cabinet has been installed in the basement of the Brewhouse Yard development, the site of the former Cannon Brewery in Clerkenwell.
More than 200 residents can now order high-speed broadband services from a range of different providers.
Openreach, which worked on the scheme with the directors of Brewhouse Yard and its managing agent, property management firm Currell, said putting cabinets in basements could bring connectivity to a number of inner city not-spots.
It said crowded pavements often leave little room for fibre cabinets, while closing and digging up roads, connecting a power supply and getting access to private land are also tough engineering challenges in urban areas.
Kim Mears, managing director of infrastructure delivery at Openreach, said: “The vast majority of the capital already has access to fibre broadband – and of course any business in London can order a dedicated, ultrafast service.
“But this is a really effective and novel way of getting fibre broadband to pockets of the city where the engineering, logistics and economics are more challenging.
“By working in partnership with landlords and agents like this, we can short-cut months of planning and disruption involved in closing and digging up roads.
“We also avoid the need to install our roadside cabinets on precious street space, so we’re piloting this approach and are working on similar projects across London to exploit those benefits and get fibre to even more Londoners.”
Elizabeth Hurry, partner at Currell, said working with residents, directors and Openreach had allowed a time-consuming process to be completed relatively quickly.
“Superfast broadband is becoming a ‘must have’ item in new developments across London, so this installation will make Brewhouse Yard a hugely appealing place to live for house hunters in the local area.”
In September, Openreach announced plans to expand its fibre broadband network in a number of London boroughs and make fibre available to a further 360,000 homes and businesses across the capital over the next two years.
The programme is expected to push overall fibre availability in London from around 90% to 95% of premises.
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