WORK BEGINS ON PROJECT GIGABIT ROLLOUT TO 45,000 HARD TO REACH HOMES ACROSS CAMBRIDGESHIRE
19 February 2024
A new report commissioned by CityFibre, the UK’s largest independent full fibre platform, has identified that Blackpool stands to be a huge beneficiary from the rollout of future-proof full fibre infrastructure which is now well underway across the town.
The study by the consultancy Hatch, (Economic Impact of Full Fibre Infrastructure from CityFibre’s Network), estimates that, over a fifteen-year period, the positive impacts of CityFibre’s £60m investment in Blackpool will include £167m in productivity and innovation gains, £37m from a widened workforce, £10m in Local Authority efficiency savings and £106m in increased housing value.
Technological benefits are also a major focus of the report, which demonstrates that CityFibre’s network in Blackpool will help unlock £396m in gross added value (GVA) from 5G services, £177m from the Internet of Things and £70m from Smart City initiatives, like intelligent traffic management systems and street lighting.
The continuing transition to home and flexible working, supported by full fibre access at home and in the office, is also unlocking access to a larger pool of labour for employers. In Blackpool working productivity uplifts are estimated to exceed £9m.
The direct impact of network construction is also identified as a major contributor of Blackpool’s economic growth, creating network construction jobs within CityFibre’s build partners and supply chain. Wherever possible, the new jobs will be recruited locally to support the rollout.
The UK, as a whole, stands to benefit from over £38bn in potential economic benefits. Productivity improvements and innovation are responsible for the largest impact, driving more than £22bn in GVA gains nationwide. This is due to the positive effect that far faster and more reliable digital connectivity has been shown to have on business productivity and innovation, increasing turnover and contributing to the formation of new businesses and business models.
Steve Thorpe, Area Manager for Blackpool at CityFibre, said: “This report demonstrates just how powerful and essential full fibre is as a catalyst for growth and a platform for innovation and investment. We’re extremely proud of our rollout in Blackpool, the £60m investment we are making here, and we look forward to seeing how it will benefit residents and businesses over the decades to come.”
Councillor Lynn Williams, Leader of the Council, Cabinet Member for Tourism, Arts and Culture, and Councillor for Claremont Ward, added: “It’s clear that full fibre infrastructure will provide the springboard that Blackpool needs to really develop its connectivity capabilities. Thanks to the work being done by CityFibre, we will be able to enjoy some of the fastest broadband speeds available that will unlock more business, learning, entertainment, and creativity.
“As we become ever more reliant on high quality connectivity, we are delighted that companies such as CityFibre are investing in this key infrastructure that will strengthen Blackpool’s standing in the digital world both now and in the decades to come.”
The network is now live in Blackpool, with services currently available from TalkTalk with more broadband providers expended to join the network soon. Across the UK, CityFibre is already working with launch partner, Vodafone, to deliver next generation broadband services, as well as TalkTalk, Giganet, Zen and IDNet, with more expected to join the network soon.
Residents interested in giving their home broadband a boost can find out more about the build and register their interest here.
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