Newcastle resellers can start offering customers gigabit-speed broadband as CityFibre builds a £62m full fibre network set to reach almost every home and business in the city by 2025.
The project, deployed by Zen Internet, will provide 1Gbps of bandwidth which Zen claims will aid remote working, entertainment, communication and other activities that have increased due to Covid-19.
This will be welcome news for those in Newcastle who will be hoping the project will reverse the trend of rising unemployment and lagging economic growth expediated by Covid-19.
A June 2020 report from the Institute of Chartered Accountants for England and Wales (ICAEW) and Oxford Economics predicted the North East will experience the weakest economic growth over the next five years of any part of the country, and its unemployment will be the highest of any UK region by 2025.
According to a Regeneris report, the Zen and CityFibre combined project may bring £31m into the city in direct network build benefits, £22m in business productivity and a further £24m in business innovation.
Jason Legget, CityFibre’s City Manager for Newcastle, said: “With the first year of network construction under our belts, we are able to offer Newcastle customers use of the full fibre gigabit infrastructure via Zen Internet’s 1 Gbps consumer broadband service.”
Paul Stobart, CEO, Zen Internet added: “With today’s technological advancements and what is going to be a permanent change to working habits you can now participate anywhere in the world right here from Newcastle.
"With the advent of full fibre infrastructure to the city big changes are on the horizon because now Newcastle can be truly geared up digitally as a powerful Gigabit City.”
Transforming Newcastle is another step in CityFibre’s Gigabit City Investment Programme which aims to convert eight million UK premises to full fibre connectivity. The new Full Fibre 900 plus is confirmed for Leicester and Ipswich next month.