CityFibre has announced that it will roll out a fibre network in the Essex seaside resort of Southend, taking the total number of locations it will have a presence in to 37.
The 50km network will cover 120 public-sector sites as part of a £3.2m deal signed by CityFibre with Southend-on-Sea Borough Council.
Once installed, CityFibre will be able to offer access to the full-fibre network to other public-sector organisations and commercial internet service providers, and possibly retail ISPs too in the future.
This approach is seeing CityFibre start to become a viable alternative to BT Openreach in urban areas, offering speeds as high as 1Gbps.
Ian Gilbert, Southend-on-Sea Borough Council's executive member for community and organisational development, said that bringing high-speed internet connecivity to the town was key to its future development.
"Connectivity is a critical issue for today's businesses, so this has the potential to be a massive boost to jobs and investment in the town," he said.
“Southend-on-Sea Borough Council is delighted with its selection of CityFibre as its provider of ultra-fast network connectivity for the borough.The solution will not only provide a stepped improvement in connectivity for council premises and schools but also offer solutions for businesses and residential premises."
CityFibre CEO Greg Mesch added that the deal underlined the forward-thinking nature of the council, and the firm's commitment to bring fibre to all areas of the UK where it can be delivered.
“We’re delighted to add Southend to our growing ranks of Gigabit City projects across the UK," he said.
"It has a forward-thinking council with an ambitious digital strategy and the appetite to become a leading example of a smart city while its business community is growing and hungry for best-in-breed connectivity options.”
V3 recently chatted with Mesch about the firm's ambitions, as he looks to become a full rival to BT Openreach by reaching as many as 100 towns and cities by 2020, in part by using Openreach's own infrastructure, as per Ofcom's proposals.
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