One Australian council is so sick of waiting for the NBN to arrive, it has decided to build its own fibre network.
The Council of the City of Gold Coast, according to CRN, has put to tender a project to build a fibre-optic wide area network (WAN). Submissions close Wednesday and the council reportedly plans to choose a contractor before Christmas.
With the Gold Coast due to host the 2018 Commonwealth Games and the NBN not scheduled to arrive until after the event, the impetus for fast network connections became urgent enough for the council to dip into its own pockets.
A council spokesperson told CRN that the money is well worth it, considering the short-term benefits for the sporting event and the long-term benefits for ratepayers.
“Given the range and scale of fibre requirements for the games, including public safety and security, it has been decided to take the opportunity to upgrade a number of the city’s existing systems,” said the spokesperson.
“It should be noted that the legacy benefits of the investment are considerable, including a full upgrade to high-definition CCTV across the city’s portfolio. This will enhance public safety, transport management and emergency services response systems for the games and into the future.”
Owning the fibre, as opposed to waiting for the NBN-owned network, would give the council more power to upgrade in the future, the spokesperson added.
“The difference will be spending money now to own the infrastructure and having wide-ranging options for service upgrades, or spending the money in future to lease the infrastructure, with reduced opportunities for enhancements.”
The Gold Coast council, like many other Australian municipalities, currently uses a mixture of copper, fibre and wireless technologies to serve its needs.