West Sussex public-sector buildings to be made more 'resilient' after cable-laying

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Cable-laying is about to start for public-sector buildings in the West Sussex Gigabit project, and the county council said it will make them more 'resilient'.

A West Sussex County Council statement said the buildings are to get the 'fastest and most reliable' broadband connectivity.

The statement read: "This will make the public services provided by the councils concerned more resilient and at less risk of disruption through poor connectivity.

"Within the next week, cable-laying will start in some roads and footpaths to connect key public buildings in Crawley and Chichester, with seven other towns and a parish to follow soon after."

The new network will provide fibre connectivity to key public sector buildings in:

• Bognor Regis

• Chichester

• Crawley

• Haywards Heath

• Horsham

• Lancing

• Littlehampton

• Midhurst

• Shoreham

• Worthing

The county council said the exact routes are being finalised, with 'every effort' being made to minimise disruption and 'avoid excavating' in roads and footpaths which have only recently been re-laid.

However, it stressed that it will be 'unavoidable' in some areas.

The statement added: "The work will typically involve digging a trench in the road or footpath and installing ducting for the fibre-optic cables.

"Some new underground chambers will also be installed as part of the excavations and then the surface will be made good. Safety barriers will be in place for the protection of the public and workforce."

The county council said it intends for most of the work to be carried out between 9am and 5pm, although 'some evening/night-time work will be needed in non-residential areas' and some road closures will also be required.

The gigabit project is being delivered by the county council, in partnership with Adur and Worthing, Arun District, Chichester District, Crawley Borough, Horsham District, and Mid Sussex District councils.

The council said it is supported by funding from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and the network will be built by CityFibre.

It added that, with no reliance on copper wires, pure fibre networks are the 'next generation' of digital infrastructure, capable of delivering 'unlimited speeds' in both directions in excess of 1Gbps (1,000 Mbps).

A county council spokesperson said: “In time, we hope that other public services such as schools, NHS buildings and emergency services will also benefit by choosing to invest in and grow the full-fibre network.

“The cable-laying work will be carried out as quickly as possible and every effort is being made to try to keep disruption to a minimum. We apologise for any inconvenience caused.”

For more information visit https://www.westsussex.gov.uk/business-and-consumers/broadband-in-west-sussex/gigabit-capable-broadband/
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