Investment in city office

Glasgow edges closer to gigabit status

James McClafferty and David Siegel (contributed)
James McClafferty and David Siegel (contributed)

An internet service provider has opened its first location in Glasgow, bringing the city a step closer to gigabit city status.

Highlands-based HighNet has invested £250,000 in developing its new base at The Beacon as it brings the next generation of ultra-fast internet to businesses and public sector services in partnership with infrastructure provider, CityFibre. 

Investment in the 40km pure fibre network will make Glasgow Scotland’s third gigabit city with connections expected to go live in early 2017. 

The first phase will take up to 12 months to complete and will be capable of reaching over 7,000 businesses and public sector organisations as well as seven hospitals, including the new Queen Elizabeth University Hospital. The new network will offer connectivity up to 100 times faster than that offered by existing infrastructure.

David J Siegel, managing director at HighNet, said: “Over the past 21 years we have grown our business throughout Scotland from our base in Inverness.

“However, with the launch of the Glasgow Gigabit City project, it was vital for HighNet to set up a local presence so that we could service our rapidly growing network of staff, partners and customers in the city.

“Digital technology has the capability to transform the way we and our customers do business. It can also drive new innovation and increased productivity. To achieve this, however, customers need top-class connectivity. Glasgow’s Gigabit City status will ensure its businesses and organisations can stay ahead of the curve, and we look forward to playing our part in delivering this ambitious project.  Exciting and interesting times lie ahead.”

James McClafferty, CityFibre’s head of regional development in Scotland, added: “In cities like Glasgow, the rise of new technologies is radically transforming the way we live and work, and this means that our digital connectivity can either be a barrier to growth and innovation or a catalyst for economic and social development.

“Working with HighNet, we want to make sure Glasgow has the infrastructure it needs to compete with other cities in the UK and across the world. Every Gigabit City we build provides local businesses, Government, public services and mobile operators with a modern fibre infrastructure, capable of meeting their data connectivity and communication needs now, and for decades to come.”

Richard Muir, deputy chief executive at Glasgow Chamber of Commerce, welcomed the announcement. He said: “Ultra-fast internet connectivity is an extremely useful commodity for the business community and something which is regularly discussed by our members.

“It’s fantastic to see a company coming into the city and creating jobs in order to enhance the local infrastructure. This type of development further strengthens Glasgow’s extensive credentials as a digital hub where businesses can thrive.” 

CityFibre is currently completing Gigabit City projects in 37 UK cities including Aberdeen and Edinburgh.

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