Partnership between CityFibre and Internet For Business delivers major digital upgrade of one of the UK’s biggest city economies
Network infrastructure provider CityFibre has revealed plans to build a city-wide, state-of-the-art pure fibre network in Aberdeen and creating what it describes as Scotland’s first Gigabit City.
The project is made possible thanks to a collaboration with Scotland-based Internet For Business (IFB), a local and national ICT service provider. CityFibre’s digital infrastructure is expected to bring transformational gigabit speeds within reach of more than 6,000 companies, as well as hundreds of public sector sites including schools, universities, libraries, hospitals and government agency buildings across the city.
Multi-million pound investment
CityFibre has been working closely with IFB to underpin its multi-million pound investment in the city, with plans to upgrade and migrate hundreds of business customers onto the new infrastructure. The network will be constructed in-line with CityFibre’s ‘Well Planned City’ model, accommodating current and future capacity requirements from the public and private sectors, mobile operators and data centre providers. It can also act as the backbone for any future deployment of fibre-to-the-home for the city’s residents.
The Gigabit City project is thought of as being critical for Aberdeen, which has become a national economic powerhouse accounting for 28 percent of Scotland’s GDP and in which 30 percent of the country’s top 100 businesses are located. It has the second highest broadband take-up rate in the UK, but an absence of any cable infrastructure. With a new competitive Gigabit fibre infrastructure at its heart, it will leapfrog other Scottish cities to become the best digitally connected city in Scotland, City Fibre said.
As in CityFibre’s other Gigabit City projects, the roll-out will be demand-led to ensure the network reaches the businesses and commercial sites most in need. CityFibre will shortly launch a demand aggregation campaign allowing businesses to register their interest and help shape the network route.
Based on a number of key sites selected in conjunction with IFB, planning for the network’s deployment is already underway and will initially focus on the centre and south of the city, including key industrial estates such as Tullos and Altens, as well as the north as far as Dyce and The Bridge of Don. Subject to demand, the build programme will be extended to areas in the west of the city, such as Westhill and Kingswells.
CityFibre CEO Greg Mesch explained: “We selected Aberdeen as it represents the perfect opportunity for a Gigabit City project. Its economic power, business makeup and absence of alternative network mean that Aberdeen will be in a position to take full advantage of this transformational digital infrastructure. Alongside IFB, CityFibre is honoured to be able to add to the proud history of this city by building a modern digital infrastructure that will future proof Aberdeen, its businesses and residents for the next 100 years.”
Graeme Gordon, CEO of IFB, commented: “We know how important connectivity services are to businesses in Aberdeen as there is always an increasing demand for more bandwidth. This new fibre network will provide a long-term foundation for businesses’ digital requirements, sending a signal to businesses that Aberdeen is a city with room to grow and progress, and providing future investors confidence in the services that the city can offer.”
Commenting on the initiative, Aberdeen City Council leader, Jenny Laing, said: “We are hugely excited to see CityFibre and IFB bring this project to life ensuring that Aberdeen city and shire have a next generation digital infrastructure in place to further economic growth over the coming years. CityFibre’s decision to make Aberdeen a Gigabit City helps us to realise the ambitions laid out in Accelerate Aberdeen of being at the leading edge of the digital revolution, with the world-class connectivity essential for continued growth and helps lay the foundations for significant improvements for residential customers in the future.”
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