Communications Minister Simon Bridges has welcomed the start of the Ultra-Fast Broadband (UFB) build in Hikurangi and Hokitika, the first towns to commence the build under the extension of the UFB programme.
In January, the Government announced an investment of $300 million to extend UFB to another 423,000 New Zealanders across a further 151 towns.
“Having access to fast and reliable broadband is critical for regional towns like Hikurangi and Hokitika,” Mr Bridges says.
“Through the Government’s Regional Growth Programme, both Northland and the West Coast have identified having access to the same world-class broadband as Kiwis living in other centres as vital to economic growth.”
The build in Hokitika will be completed early next year, providing an additional 3,200 people across more than 1,500 premises in the area with access to UFB.
“The Government has invested around $2.5 million to deliver UFB to Hokitika. Under the extension to the programme, fibre deployment is also planned for Reefton, Westport and Runanga. Greymouth already has access to UFB,” Mr Bridges says.
“By the end of 2019, more than 18,000 people – or 53 per cent of the West Coast’s population – will be able to access faster, more reliable broadband.”
The build in Hikurangi will be completed later this year, providing an additional 1,830 people across more than 550 premises with access to fibre.
The Government has invested around $600,000 to deliver UFB to Hikurangi. Under the extension, fibre deployment is also planned for Kerikeri, Dargaville, Paihia, Ruakaka and Taipa Bay-Mangonui, among other towns and areas in Northland.
By the end of 2023, more than 94,000 people – or 54 per cent of Northland’s population – will be able to access UFB.