Tuesday, 10 December 2019

Questions (503)

Fiona O'Loughlin


503. Deputy Fiona O'Loughlin asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the timescale for broadband roll-out in County Kildare; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [51205/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Communications)

The National Broadband Plan is the Government’s plan to rollout high speed broadband to the 1.1 million people living and working in the nearly 540,000 premises including almost 100,000 businesses and farms, along with 695 schools, where commercial operators will not commit to deliver the service.

Following the contract signing on 19 November, work has already begun and a deployment plan will be made available by NBI shortly. All counties will see premises passed in the first 2 years and over 90% of premises in the State will have access to high speed broadband within the next four years.

Approximately 300 Broadband Connections Points (BCPs), will be connected to high speed broadband during 2020, to enable communities to quickly get free public access to high speed broadband.

The BCPs have been specifically selected by the local authorities so that they can provide public Wi-Fi and other facilities to support mini digital/enterprise hubs to the local community in advance of the main NBP deployment. Broadband Officers in each Local Authority were tasked with consulting with local communities and business to find the appropriate mix of locations to reap the maximum benefits.

All BCPs will have a free public Wi-Fi connection, some will also have hot-desks, and some will be digital hub business centres where digital training, business information events and other SME supports are organised.9 BCPs are planned for deployment in Kildare and they are:

- Back Gate Lodge, Kilkea Demesne, Castledermot, Co. Kildare, R14Y006

- Bigstone Community Hall, Ballyraggan, Rathvilly, Co. Kildare, R93E956

- Clonfert Pet Farm, Clonfert South, Maynooth, Co. Kildare, W23PY05

- Crookstown Community Hall, Moyleabbey, Ballitore, Co. Kildare, R14HP80

- HSE, Kilcock Primary Care Centre, Commons West, Co. Kildare

- Lullymore Heritage Park, Lullymore East, Rathangan, Co. Kildare, R51E036

- Rathmore National School, Rathmore West, Naas, Co. Kildare, W91VK46

- Saint David's National School, Piper's Hill Campus, Killashee, Naas, Co. Kildare, W91AE26

- Stresslite Floors, Hempstown, Blessington, Co. Kildare, W91XW89

By the end of 2021, NBI plans to pass approximately 115,000 premises, with 70,000 - 100,000 passed each year thereafter until rollout is completed. NBI has indicated that the network rollout will take an estimated 7 years from the beginning of deployment.

The planned rollout will provide access to high speed broadband to 13,329 premises located in the Intervention Area in Co. Kildare. The NBP contract will ensure continued availability to those households, businesses and schools, of a future proofed high speed broadband network for the next 25 years, through investment of approximately €128m in Kildare.