£10.7m to make Edinburgh a Super Connected City

Funding of £10.7m to bring 90% of Edinburgh residents and businesses high speed broadband by 2015 has been announced by the UK Government today.

The capital funding to be managed by the City of Edinburgh Council will enhance wireless zones in key streets, squares and parks, initially focused in the city centre. The project is part of the £100m of urban broadband funding set up by the Westminster government for their Super-Connected Initiative, which was announced in March.

The final 'Connected Capital' plan for Edinburgh was submitted by the City of Edinburgh Council ahead of today's announcement.

The Council also agreed to commit £1.9m of revenue funding to deliver the programme at a meeting in April this year. Further funding and revenue streams will be sought to allow specific programme activities.

Cllr Alasdair Rankin, Convener of the Finance and Resources Committee, said: "This is great news for Edinburgh. We knew the funding was coming but now the exact amount has been announced we can put our plans into action to make Edinburgh a super connected city.

"This project is a great example of the Capital Coalition's pledge to provide for economic growth and prosperity. I am confident it will help Edinburgh to attract news jobs and investment, help unemployed people into work or learning and will greatly enhance our offering as a digitally inclusive city."

Culture Secretary Maria Miller said: "Fast broadband is essential for growth, and is key to the country's economic future.  Edinburgh has produced ambitious and comprehensive plans, which will turn it into a digital leader, and give the local economy a real boost.  The new investment will help put the city at the centre of the digital stage, competing for jobs and investment with the best in the world."

The Secretary of State for Scotland Michael Moore said: "The modern world depends on connectivity to do business and having fast broadband access is a significant boost for Scottish firms. The funding from the UK Government will see Edinburgh lead the way in Scotland, allowing our companies to grow, find new markets and create jobs and also give the public faster and more efficient access to public services.  This Government is investing for the future with fast broadband and I welcome today's announcement."

The Council is working with stakeholders across Edinburgh to develop the project. 

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