Liverpool City Region announces construction of a 212 km high speed full fiber network
Feb 25, 2021
Liverpool, UK - Liverpool Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram has announced the launch of a new £30m partnership that will help make the Liverpool City Region the most digitally connected area in the UK and ultimately lead to a £1 billion boost to the local economy, it’s claimed.
NGE and ITS Technology, working in partnership with LCRCA (Liverpool City Region Combined Authority), have been selected for the Liverpool Backhaul project : a high-speed fiber infrastructure project which will connect all 6 local authority areas in the Liverpool Region, by delivering Gigabit internet connectivity to a diversity of key economic activities.
Work has already begun on a 212km full fibre, gigabit-capable network infrastructure. When complete, it will put city region businesses in prime position to lead the way in a host of growing sectors, from health and life sciences to Artificial Intelligence and advanced manufacturing.
Half-owned by the city region’s Combined Authority, headed up by Mayor Steve Rotheram, the full fibre infrastructure will be capable of delivering speeds of 1,000mbps and beyond. The LCR Digital Infrastructure Project is a joint venture half-owned by the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority in partnership with North West-based ITS Technology Group, who will lead the project, working alongside construction partner NGE, who are managing the build and roll out of the network.
Experts estimate that with 100% full fibre coverage across the City Region, building on this network, the economic boost could be worth up to £1bn, creating thousands of local job and training opportunities.
Steve Rotheram, Metro Mayor of the Liverpool City Region, said: “When I was elected, I made it a priority to make our region the most digitally connected anywhere in the country. Today we take a major step towards that, with the launch of this exciting partnership. “Our region was at the heart of the first industrial revolution, and I believe that this project can help us be at the forefront of the fourth industrial revolution, creating thousands of jobs and ultimately generating £1bn for the local economy. It will make us leaders in the industries of tomorrow and will help us attract talent and investment from around the world as others look to take advantage of our skills, infrastructure and expertise.
“Local people and businesses will feel the benefits too - in the form of significantly faster speeds as well as the jobs and training opportunities, although the Government still needs to tackle the problem of digital exclusion. “And, best of all, it will all be 50% owned by us so we can continue to reap the benefits for years to come. “As we have done so many times before, this is our region seizing the initiative, leading the way and crafting what I hope will be a lucrative and successful new future that everybody in our region can benefit from.” In its initial phase, the consortium will create a resilient fibre ‘backhaul network’, connecting three transatlantic cables and major economic clusters in each of the Liverpool City Region’s six local authority areas.
Digital infrastructure will be installed in carriageways, footpaths and cycleways across the city region over the next two years, using innovative deployment techniques to minimise the impact on road and public transport users wherever possible. Cllr David Baines, Digital Connectivity and Inclusion Portfolio Holder and Leader of St Helens Council, said: “Being digitally connected is more important for our region than ever before so I am pleased we are moving at pace with this important work. “This is a transformational project, one which will not only help our city region recover from COVID-19 but help us rebuild our economy better than before. Gigabit-capable connectivity creates a huge opportunity for those living and working in all six of our boroughs, through attracting global companies and industries and creating more jobs.”
Stay up to date with the latest industry developments: sign up to receive TelecomTV's top news and videos plus exclusive subscriber-only content direct to your inbox – including our daily news briefing and weekly wrap.