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Merseyside councils unite for super-fast broadband project
SUPER-fast fibre broadband could be extended to up to 98% of Merseyside businesses and homes within the next three years following a multi-million pound partnership project between Merseyside local authorities and BT.
The telecoms giant has been chosen to partner Liverpool, along with Wirral, St Helens, Sefton and Knowsley councils.
"Merseyside Connected" – a joint body of five councils led by Liverpool - builds on BT’s on-going commercial fibre deployment across the Liverpool City Region, and aims to provide a high speed broadband network to an additional 43,000 premises in the area.
This means the vast majority of Merseyside – around 634,000 homes and businesses – could have access to fibre broadband by the end of July, 2016.
The Merseyside Connected project will also support the council partnership’s aim to focus on enabling superfast broadband to small and medium enterprises and help boost the local economy.
The three-year project will begin with a period of planning and surveying, before Openreach, BT’s local network business, starts work on the ground in summer of 2014.
Wirral Council leader Cllr Phil Davies, Merseyside representative on the North West European Regional Development Fund local management committee, said; "Super-fast broadband will help local businesses improve performance and create and safeguard jobs.
"It will provide a major boost to the Merseyside economy and the North West European Regional Development Fund programme is pleased to be supporting it financially."
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