Harrogate Borough Council is increasing the capacity of its network tenfold by upgrading its fibre backbone to Gigabit Ethernet.
Kevin McHugh, data communications manager at the council, explained that the aim of the project was to reduce local area network congestion during peak periods and support bandwidth-hungry new applications.
"Our old network was becoming obsolete. Its performance was inadequate and the equipment was becoming less reliable with age," he said.
"Our aim was to replace it with a modern, resilient computer network that could support increased volumes of traffic as well as next-generation multimedia applications and systems, such as voice and video, that will be deployed as part of the e-government agenda."
Kingston Communications will install a metropolitan area network supporting both front- and back-office council staff.
The network is based on Nortel equipment including Passport 8600 routing switches as well as BayStack 380 and 470 switches with Nortel's Optivity Policy Manager as a central point of management.
The integrated telephony and "data ready network", meaning that converged voice and data over IP can be added at a later date, comprises 17km of fibre linking 14 council sites.
The new network will provide a more robust infrastructure to support the council's 'access to services' initiative.
Harrogate provides over 100 services to some 140,000 people, including refuse collection, public health and bereavement services.
McHugh said that the council had opted for Nortel primarily because of its quality of service support and the level of resilience provided through its new split multi-link trunking architecture.
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