Metro Mayor announces next steps in city region’s digital revolution
Steve Rotheram, Metro Mayor of the Liverpool City Region, has announced the next step towards the creation of an ultrafast fibre network, in a push to make the Liverpool City Region the most digitally connected in the country.
In preparation for work starting on the 220km+ fibre network, two supplier events will be held where fibre companies, network operators, contractors, investors, and other relevant organisations can find out how they can get involved in the design, deployment and management of the network.
The events will be held in London on Tuesday, July 30, and in Liverpool on Thursday, August 1.
Steve Rotheram said: “Connectivity made us the gateway to the first Industrial Revolution and can put us at the forefront of the fourth Industrial Revolution.
“Devolution gives us the opportunity to transform our city region by making use of our key assets.
“The transatlantic internet cables connecting the UK, North America and the rest of the world land in Sefton, and we have one of the most powerful supercomputers in the country – the Hartree supercomputer – in Halton.
“By linking those two assets with an ultrafast fibre network that connects all six of our local authorities, and links into projects like the Knowledge Quarter, we can supercharge our economy, creating inclusive growth that benefits everyone.
“We are going to make this digital revolution a reality and I’d like to encourage industry experts and investors to join us. It’s not just about fibre broadband, it’s about digital in all of its forms.”
He said: “Transformational projects such as Digital Connectivity and our Mersey Tidal Power project will enhance our reputation internationally and deliver real benefits for local people, businesses and our communities.”
The ambitious vision is for the Liverpool City Region to deliver transformational, inclusive economic growth, which will require faster, more reliable and more resilient digital connectivity.
This major new core fibre network will consist of a series of digital ‘loops’, which will stimulate local fibre networks enabling businesses, public service providers and people at home to access next generation connectivity.
The combined authority is working collaboratively with its six constituent local authorities and other key partners.
The far reaching benefits of this connectivity include:
- Attracting major new companies, industries and jobs, plus enabling manufacturers to move massive data sets around with ease
- Improving health services eg instant and remote high resolution medical scanning, surgery and data transfer
- Boosting the growing digital and creative sector, while unlocking innovation within SMEs across all sectors
- Enabling developments in education services, such as online teaching and learning resources
- Enhancing public services
- Cllr David Baines, portfolio holder for digital connectivity and inclusion for the combined authority, said: “This is a transformational project that aims to firmly place our city region at the forefront of digital connectivity.
“High speed, reliable and resilient connectivity, together with a future-proofed network infrastructure, will bring huge opportunities and a wide range of benefits to those living and working in all six of our boroughs.”
Asif Hamid, chair of the Liverpool City Region LEP, said: “Creating a fit for purpose digital infrastructure for the Liverpool City Region is incredibly important for business – faster, more reliable connectivity will not only support the businesses we have operating in the city region, but will also attract major companies and industries here, thereby creating more job opportunities for our residents.
“It is vital that we get the right suppliers to ensure we are at the forefront of the digital revolution and I would encourage companies to attend these two events.”
The events involve a presentation about the project with opportunities to submit ideas, share information, and have direct dialogue with the combined authority.
Information gathered from this event will inform the procurement of the deployment and management of a fibre network. This process is expected to start later in the year.