Residents and businesses in Geelong’s north
will soon benefit from free Wi-Fi and enhanced broadband services, after
council awarded a $1.5 million contract to ENE.HUB to deliver the project.
Community members will be able to access internet
speeds faster than currently available and download up to 1GB free a day, from Wi-Fi
access points across 40 locations.
The City is fully funding the project through
a four-year $1.8 million grant from the Victorian Government’s $45 million
Connecting Regional Communities Program.
The program aims to address gaps in digital
access and affordability in the north, which lead to social and economic disadvantage.
Local businesses will also enjoy economic
benefits through reduced service fees for fast internet access.
The local community has played a part in
pinpointing specific locations that experienced access issues. Survey
responses were received from nearly 600 community members throughout
The City is planning further consultation early
next year with local businesses, community and internal stakeholders to finalise
ENE.HUB will start working on the project in
early January, with services anticipated to start later in 2020.
The network provider was chosen to install and
run the services until January 2024 following an open tender process, based on its
previous project experience, expertise and value for money.
Asher – Mayor
Fast and reliable internet is critical for
things like running a successful business, studying, applying for jobs and
This project is a real win for Geelong’s
fast-growing northern suburbs and its benefits will be seen in the community
for years to come.
Councillor Anthony Aitken, Chair,
This is an exciting good news story. Free Wi-Fi and enhanced broadband
services will go towards addressing the digital divide in the northern suburbs
and unlock more opportunities to residents and businesses.
The importance of
providing improved internet can’t be overstated as residents can’t apply for a
job or government services without digital access.
I’m proud of this
significant commitment from the City and state government to social equity and
justice. I’m looking forward to seeing northern suburbs residents take full
advantage of this infrastructure.