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Businesses and residents across Clackmannanshire are set to benefit from the Council's investment in the national Step Change Project for Next Generation Broadband which was announced this week.
The Council agreed earlier this year to invest £300,000 in the Step Change Project with an emphasis on maximising the number of premises that can access fibre broadband across Clackmannanshire, while prioritising coverage for Tillicoultry, Dollar, Coalsnaughton, and Muckhart.
Welcoming the announcement, Council Leader Gary Womersley said the Council's investment will bring great benefits. He said: "This investment is expected to take overall fibre coverage in Clackmannanshire to over 99% of premises from a starting point of around 71%. The investment will ensure that Clackmannanshire is one of the best covered areas in the UK in terms of high speed broadband."
He added: "Clackmannanshire has significant issues with lack of broadband capacity which is why this Council was determined to help businesses and residents across the area by providing Next Generation Broadband. This project supports our aspirations for better connectivity as expressed in our ICT Strategy which was approved last year. It will bring
significant economic, social and operation benefits in line with our business improvement programme, Making Clackmannanshire Better.
"Faster broadband will bring a great deal of benefits for the business community. Having access to faster broadband will help them become efficient and able to compete in global markets.
"Residents will also notice significant improvements in the speeds of broadband, especially at the peak evening times, when speeds traditionally slow as people go online at home."
The Next Generation Broadband national project will be delivered by BT and is being led by the Scottish Government working together with local authorities and government agency Broadband Delivery UK.
The Council will now work with BT, the Scottish Government, communities and businesses to plan the phased roll out over the coming years, with works running from 2014 through to 2016. Subsequent detailed announcements will be made on which communities will benefit as part of each phase.