Improved Broadband and Mobile Coverage In the Rangitikei

The Government has announced a next round of funding available to subsidise the rollout of broadband in urban areas (UFB2), rural areas (RBI2) and to address mobile blackspots (MBS). This funding aims to increase connectivity of New Zealanders from 75% to 80%. (This is defined as having access to connections delivering a download speed greater than 5Mbps.)

Rangitikei has missed out on earlier rounds of funding but this time Bulls, Taihape and Marton have been included in the list of towns eligible for UFB2 support. Tenders have been invited from broadband infrastructure providers and the Government expects to award UFB contracts from March/April 2016 with the build starting from July 2016.

Consideration of the rollout for the rural broadband initiative and mobile blackspot funding has been deferred for the time being (watch this space!).

To “be in to win” the Council has had to provide two documents to the government.

The first document outlines the support that Council will provide to infrastructure providers to assist the rollout of broadband.

Registration of Interest - Improved Broadband/Mobile Coverage.

The second document outlines projects that Council and the community feel are important to stimulate demand for broadband. This Digital Enablement Plan is being implemented by a Steering Group of local residents and businesses.

Rapid Rangitikei - Our Plan for a Connected Community