Fibre operator Cityfibre recently announced that Milton Keynes would be the first of a number of cities to be on the receiving end of a 1GB ultrafast broadband network. The rollout is ultimately set to connect approximately 1 million homes over several cities.
This comes off the back of recent news that Cityfibre had managed to raise around £200 million worth of investment for the continued expansion of their Fibre-to the premises/Home (FTTP/H) network. Until recently this had specifically focused on connecting business and public sector sites in approximately 42 large towns and cities across the country. This figure is expected to rise to 50 by 2020.
Cityfibre has now suggested that their latest round of funding could help to develop on that plan by implementing their network in residential premises in 5-10 of the proposed areas from 2018. The company also stated that its mid-term plan to reach 50 different towns and cities across the UK could also allow for them to install FTTH to “no less than 5 million premises by 2025.
Vodafone and Cityfibre have entered into a £500m deal to deploy phase one of their plan which is due to start in the first half of 2018 and will aim to connect a minimum of 1 million homes in around 12 different areas. According to Vodafone this particular rollout should be almost finished by 2021.
Once that has been completed there is also the option to expand this plan to an additional 5 million residential premises by 2025.
Greg Mesch, Chief Executive at CityFibre said:
“The partnership between Vodafone and CityFibre aims to tackle the huge problem the UK faces in terms of digital inadequacy and will help fulfil our vision of a Gigabit Britain. We are at the early stages of creating the Gigabit fibre network that the UK needs and deserves, and with the announcement of Milton Keynes as our first project we are well on our way to making this vision a reality. Full speed ahead.”
Cityfibre does actually have a 162km long dark fibre network in MK, which at the end of 2015 it bought from KCom and then made some alterations so that it would provide a better level of service to businesses in the area. They will be using this infrastructure as the basis for their new FTTH service which will be connecting the fibre cable to the premises in question.
The physical work is looking like it will begin in March 2018 with the first people connected by the end of the year. The aim is to reach the vast majority of commercial and residential properties in Milton Keynes.