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NBN comes to Southbank … for some

20 Nov 2012

NBN comes to Southbank … for some Image

Some Southbank residents are to be connected to the National Broadband Network (NBN) within the next year.

Residents of the yet-to-be-completed Guilfoyle, Tiara Apartments and Guild Apartments will be connected to the service years before people living in existing towers.

NBN Co is connecting all new towers approved after January 1, 2011 while there are no plans on the horizon to connect other residents.

NBN Co says it is connecting what it calls “greenfields” sites as soon as they come on stream.  Existing towers, known as “brownfields” sites have to wait for the general fibre optic rollout.

This is despite a spokesperson from the NBN Co confirming to Southbank Local News that it is much easier to connect brownfields sites when there is a cluster of greenfields buildings among them, as there is in Southbank.

“While we appreciate the importance of broadband to the Southbank community – particularly those living in existing developments – we have a responsibility to rollout the NBN in accordance with a number of engineering and design principles to ensure it is delivered as efficiently and cost-effectively as possible,” media relations advisor Edwina Hinchliffe said.

Southbank residents within brownfields areas are keen to lobby the Government and the NBN Co to get the broadband network connected sooner rather than later.

Residents in The Clarendon, on Haig St, have taken the initiative of paying for the internal communications infrastructure to be installed themselves, through owners corporation fees.

Carlos Zeccola is a resident at the forefront of the issue and wants to encourage all Southbank residents to lobby for the connection of the high-speed internet system.

He described the NBN as: “A vital piece of infrastructure, it’s full potential is yet to be discovered.”

“The area is going to be littered with the NBN anyway, through the greenfields, so it will be cost effective to get it fully across Southbank. Through my discussions with residents there has been a very supportive reaction from the community around lobbying for it,” Mr Zeccola explained.

Mr Zeccola said some of the reasons Southbank should be connected included its high density and resulting economies of scale and the fact that many buildings in the area had poor TV reception for which NBN would provide an alternative pathway.

He also said that, put simply, Southbank doesn’t have much public space or other amenities and deserves some attention.

“The NBN would attract business to the area and help fill some of the empty frontages creating a more engaging street level,” he said.

The next round of NBN rollouts will be announced in March.

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