City communications


22 March 2023

Angus Robertson MP on tour of City Fibre works 1

With the construction of Edinburgh’s full fibre network now well underway, CityFibre, the UK’s largest independent full fibre platform, recently welcomed Angus Robertson, Member of the Scottish Parliament for Edinburgh Central, for a tour of its work in the city, giving him a closer look at the £100m city wide project.

During the visit, representatives from CityFibre introduced Angus Robertson MSP and Cllr Finlay McFarlane to full fibre digital infrastructure, the best network technology currently available, at one of CityFibre’s Fibre Exchanges (FEx) which is part of a rapidly growing network of purpose-built, power-efficient, micro-edge data centres used to deliver, manage and monitor live services and data across its network.

Unlike much of the digital infrastructure accessible to households today, full fibre networks use 100% fibre optics to carry data at high speed all the way from the home to the point of connection. This gives users consistently faster speeds for upload and download (up to 1,000 Mbps), near limitless bandwidth and connectivity users can depend on. 

A full fibre connection also goes far beyond simply enabling access to the latest entertainment at lightning speed. As an essential digital utility, full fibre boosts households and businesses alike, with experts saying it will drive a range of economic benefits, such as making us more productive and innovative.

According to a report commissioned by CityFibre by consultancy Hatch (Economic Impact of Full Fibre Infrastructure from CityFibre’s Network), over a fifteen-year period, the positive impacts of CityFibre’s £100m private investment in Edinburgh will include £934m in productivity and innovation gains, £206m from a widened workforce, and £540m in increased housing value. 

Technological benefits are also a major focus of the report, which demonstrates that CityFibre’s network in Edinburgh will help unlock £2bn in GVA from 5G services, £409m from the Internet of Things and £394m from Smart City initiatives, like intelligent traffic management systems and street lighting.

Paul Wakefield, Area Manager for Edinburgh at CityFibre, said: “Edinburgh is such an exciting city which always has something going on and is a key area for businesses, tourism and culture across Scotland. We know that having access to the best connectivity available can bring massive benefits to the communities we work in, and our recent Hatch report highlights just how big the potential benefits are for Edinburgh.

“It was fantastic to have the opportunity to introduce Angus Robertson MSP and Cllr Finlay McFarlane to the build and show them how we are growing our network across Edinburgh, and provide a demonstration of the technology we are using to build across the city.”

Commenting on the progress of CityFibre’s £100m project, Angus Robertson, Member of the Scottish Parliament for Edinburgh Central, said: “Having the opportunity to see how this brand-new digital infrastructure will underpin our future was fascinating and encouraging. It was fantastic to observe this ambitious project firsthand, and I look forward to seeing the benefits it will bring to residents and businesses across the city.

“We want Scotland to be a digitally inclusive nation. Ensuring everyone has the opportunity to access the best technology available is a big part of this. This means investment in Edinburgh, from network providers like CityFibre, is vital to achieving our ambition.”

CityFibre is working in close partnership with Edinburgh City Council and local communities to deliver a fast rollout while managing potential disruption.

As the network is completed in each neighbourhood, CityFibre will designate the homes ‘ready for service’, which means residents can choose to connect to full fibre-enabled broadband services when they go live in their area.

In Edinburgh, full fibre services are currently available from launch partner Vodafone, as well as TalkTalk and Zen with others 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.