30 March, 2008 – Manchester: next generation digital city
Manchester people can expect to see ‘next generation’ broadband become a reality, with Internet access available up to 1,000 times faster than most services provide today.
In its new Manchester Digital Strategy the City Council announces its intention to make Manchester a “Next Generation Digital City”.
The proposals, which are being developed in partnership with local universities, colleges, businesses and community groups, set out how making super-fast broadband available across the city will help with the creation of new jobs, new training opportunities and new services.
The Digital Strategy aims to create a digital masterplan for the city, which will guide future investment and bring together industry, research bodies and community representatives to develop new ideas for services to benefit local business and the wider community.
The proposals are outlined in a report to the City Council’s Executive, which highlights that Manchester is in an excellent position to attract investment for next generation broadband.
Councillor Neil Swannick, Executive Member for Environment, said: “If Manchester’s economy is to continue to grow then it is vital that we have accessible and affordable super-fast broadband, based on the proven state-of-the-art capabilities of fibre and advanced wireless; this is what the Next Generation Digital City project aims to do.
“We know that other European cities which are competing directly with us, such as Amsterdam and Paris, are providing fibre directly into businesses and the home, at a fraction of the cost of anywhere in the UK. Consumers and businesses then benefit by having reliable broadband at anything up to 1,000 times the speeds that are currently offered here. We believe that this will soon become a major competitive threat to Manchester and the UK as a whole.
“This year we’re celebrating the 60th anniversary of the world’s first real computer being invented here in Manchester, and I can’t think of a better way to prepare ourselves for the technological challenges of the next 60 years, than with these Next Generation Digital City proposals”.
The report outlines the reasons for the development of the Digital City project and describes the potential benefits to the local community. The project aims to demonstrate how local partnerships can establish real test-beds for next generation connectivity, based on fibre and advanced wireless, and shows how this can both bring investment and jobs into the city, and provide new services that will benefit local people.
Source: Manchester Digital Design Agency