More than 10,000 homes and businesses across Aberdeenshire are set to benefit from fibre broadband in the next phase of the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme.
The £410 million works will, in this phase, bring high-speed internet access to Auchterless, Banff, Cruden Bay, Gardenstown, Huntly, Inverallochy, Kinellar, Lonmay, Macduff, Mintlaw, Portlethen, Portsoy, Rhynie, Tarves and Udny over this winter.
As a result of the engineering roll out by BT, which is already under way, around 55,000 homes and business across Scotland now have access to fibre broadband through the programme. In total, more than three quarters of a million homes and business premises are expected to benefit.
The new infrastructure will mean that multiple users in a home or business will be able to access the internet and download and share large files at the same time and more quickly than ever before.
Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: “Today marks an important milestone for the people and businesses of Aberdeenshire as well as for the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband partnership.
“This programme will lay the foundations of a world class digital Scotland, by extending fibre broadband access to parts of Scotland that wouldn’t otherwise be served commercially.
“The scale of the challenge of delivering fibre broadband into rural Scotland outstrips any other part of the UK and will generate significant economic benefits, including new jobs and increased productivity.
“This is an important step towards ensuring that Scotland has world-class digital connectivity by 2020 and will be a key factor in ensuring Scotland’s long-term economic prosperity.”
The programme will see around 95 per cent of premises connected to fibre broadband infrastructure by 2017/18.