Construction is underway on the $6.6 million cable landing station, which is the major land-based facility for the $35 million Sunshine Coast International Broadband Submarine Cable network.
The submarine cable landing station, located at Maud Street, Maroochydore, will help deliver Australia’s fastest data and telecommunications connection to Asia from the east coast of Australia and the second fastest to the United States via an undersea fibre optic cable.
The landing station is part of the international cable network that will be delivered thanks to $15 million from the Queensland Government’s $150 million Jobs and Regional Growth Fund and $20 million from Sunshine Coast Council.
Mayor Mark Jamieson said the start of construction of the cable landing station marked the next significant milestone in the delivery of the Sunshine Coast international broadband submarine cable project.
“Council is the first local government in Australia to secure an investment in an international submarine cable and with the cable landing station underway, we are ensuring the delivery of the international submarine cable connection is on track to be operational in mid-2020,” Mayor Jamieson said.
“Our Sunshine Coast is fast becoming a digital leader and the submarine cable network will help position our region as a key digital trading location from Australia.
“The Sunshine Coast will provide the fastest international data and telecommunication connection point from Queensland to Asia, providing a significant step-change in the Sunshine Coast’s attractiveness as an investment location.
“We will be stimulating investment and jobs growth on the Sunshine Coast thanks to the superior telecommunications connectivity and data infrastructure that we will be able to offer and this could serve to attract some of the biggest data users to our region.”
Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning Cameron Dick said the cable would prove a key catalyst in boosting the local economy.
“Connecting Queensland directly to a major international hub will future-proof our digital infrastructure and provide massive economic stimulus for the Sunshine Coast,” Mr Dick said.
“An independent assessment commissioned by council estimates the project will create up to 864 new jobs and could add $927 million to our state’s economy.
“This is a transformative development for the fast-growing Sunshine Coast, delivering the only international cable landing on the east coast of Australia outside of Sydney.
“The Palaszczuk Government is proud to support Sunshine Coast Council in delivering this visionary infrastructure with $15 million funding through our $150 million Jobs and Regional Growth Fund.”
RTI Connectivity is building a 9700-kilometre submarine cable between Japan, Guam and Australia (JGA), and a 550-kilometre branch which will connect the JGA cable to the new landing station at Maroochydore.
RTI Connectivity Director David Yuile congratulated the Sunshine Coast Council for its support, emphasising the vital international connectivity the submarine cable would provide to the Sunshine Coast.
“The Sunshine Coast International Broadband Submarine Cable is a major piece of infrastructure for the region and the State,” Mr Yuile said.
“Fast speed, direct connectivity to Asian markets and beyond is an essential tool for local and state-wide businesses and it will be a catalyst for increased investment in this region.”
Following a tender process, Australian-based Vertiv, a global leader in critical infrastructure, was recently awarded the contract to design and construct the cable landing station.
Robert Linsdell, Managing Director of Vertiv (Australia and New Zealand) said the project would support the local building and construction industry as well as providing future employment opportunities.
“Vertiv is committed to maximising the use of locally based contractors throughout the project,” Mr Linsdell said.
“With that in mind, I’m thrilled to announce that Lanskey Constructions has been appointed as the builder to deliver this exciting project for the region.”
Lanskey Constructions Managing Director Paul Lanskey said they were looking forward to the challenge of building this core piece of the network infrastructure.
“Earthworks for the landing station will start immediately and the building works are scheduled for completion by the end of June 2019,” Mr Lanskey said.
“During construction, the project will directly employ around 80 people and generate additional indirect economic benefits to surrounding businesses and the community.”
On completion, council will start the installation phase for the landing station facilities which will connect to the wider network, in preparation for the submarine cable connection being operational in mid-2020.