UFB rollout in Selwyn

by Kent Caddick

An additional 13 areas have been included in the Ultra-Fast Broadband roll out in Selwyn.

Chorus has released dates for when work will start in the Selwyn towns included in the extension of the Ultra-Fast Broadband programme (UFB), starting with Southbridge in February next year and finishing with Castle Hill in November 2021. 

Chorus’s general manager of infrastructure, Ed Beattie, said all up, an additional 13 areas are now included in the programme in Selwyn. 

“Following work with the Government, Crown Infrastructure Partners and our build service companies, we have been able to bring the programme completion forward by a massive two years from 2024 to 2022,” Mr Beattie said.

“This is great news for the Selwyn towns included in the programme, as it means a number of places will get fibre much faster than previously thought.”

All up, Chorus is building the fibre network to more than 1.3 million homes, businesses, schools and medical centres right across New Zealand.

The latest figures show that the first stage of the UFB build is 70% complete, with about 800,000 premises now able to connect to fibre. Fibre uptake in Chorus areas across the country is currently at 42%, well ahead of the initial 2020 target of 20%.

Mr Beattie said the big growth drivers for data use were video and smart devices.

“People’s viewing habits have shifted online. It’s now very mainstream to watch television shows and movies via an app on a smart television or tablet.

“Many of the most popular television shows are online. But it’s not just international providers like Netflix who are offering content online, domestic broadcasters TVNZ and Three both launched live streaming services in 2017.”