OPENREACH have today confirmed that Liverpool is to be included in the first tranche of a new programme to bring 100Mbps internet access to major cities in the UK.
The decision, which will trigger a £250m investment windfall, followed negotiations with Mayor Joe Anderson who convinced the company to include the city in the first tranche.
The partnership with local company MJ Quinn, along with the city council’s control over its own highways network, a Landlord Licensing Scheme to improve communications with property owners, and an offer of office space for the project in the Cunard Building alongside the council and MJ Quinn, have helped secure significant investment and create up to 60 local apprenticeships.
Openreach’s plans are to install Fibre To The Premises, meaning the traditional copper wires which connect homes and businesses to the internet will be replaced with high-speed fibre, significantly increasing the speed of internet connections.
The programme will mean a major investment in the future capacity and speed of the city’s internet, benefitting both businesses and residents and boosting major regeneration projects such as the Knowledge Quarter, Liverpool Waters and Ten Streets.
Mayor Anderson welcomed the news: “I’m delighted to negotiate our city’s place in this first tranche, creating jobs, apprentices and transforming our internet infrastructure.
“This is a significant infrastructure investment and the partnership between the Council, Openreach and MJ Quinn will give our city a huge boost. I wanted to make sure our city was at the forefront of this programme and committed to working with the other partners to make this happen here.”
MJ Quinn, which works with Openreach across the UK, said: “We are a long-established Liverpool company with over 2,000 staff nationally,” explains CEO Mike Quinn, “and we will be working to roll out Fibre networks across the country. But we are all really pleased to be able to make this programme happen in Liverpool. We take great pride in all our work, but especially when it’s for our own city, which is why we are also really pleased to announce that we will create 60 apprentices and a great number of ancillary posts as part of this project.”