- Street lights, bus shelters and traffic lights will host more mobile network equipment to help boost mobile coverage as part of a new scheme announced by the Government to cut red tape and install more 4G and 5G kit.
- Under the plans, telecoms firms will get easier access to public buildings and street lights, bus shelters and traffic lights across the Crawley area, accelerating the delivery of the revolutionary benefits of 4G and 5G to people and businesses.
- This comes as the Government continues to level up the country and end the digital divide, boosting digital connectivity in every corner of the UK.
Henry Smith MP has welcomed the news that people across Crawley and West Sussex are set to benefit from improved mobile coverage as part of a new scheme to cut red tape and install more 4G and 5G kit.
Eight winning projects will receive a share from the £4 million Digital Connectivity Infrastructure Accelerator (DCIA) to explore how digital software can help simplify local authority processes when telecoms operators request access to publicly-owned buildings and curbside infrastructure.
“One of the core missions of this Government’s Levelling Up agenda is getting everyone, in every corner of the UK, better connected and ending the digital divide.
“These plans, which will slash red tape from the 5G roll out and boost mobile phone connectivity, are another step forward in this mission, improving mobile coverage and for people across the Crawley area.
“I’m committed to levelling up Crawley and this boost for businesses and households takes us another step further in delivering on just that as we build back better.”
Street furniture such as road signs, street lights, bus shelters and CCTV poles can be used to improve 4G coverage but they are also integral to the roll out of 5G, which requires a larger number of smaller ‘cell sites’ – where antennas and other telecoms equipment are placed to form a network – to ensure seamless coverage and to meet surging demand for connectivity.
Telecoms firms can often find it difficult and time consuming to acquire the information needed to verify a structure is suitable for hosting network equipment, therefore the Government will invest in piloting the latest innovations in digital asset management platforms.
This software will enable local councils to more easily share data mobile companies need to accelerate their roll out plans and deliver the revolutionary benefits of 4G and 5G to people and businesses.
The project means communities in 44 local authority areas can expect to benefit from faster and more reliable mobile coverage sooner, and it could mean there is less need for new masts which can often take longer to build and set up. If successful, the technology could be rolled out to local authorities across the UK.
The Digital Infrastructure Minister, Julia Lopez, commented;
“We want to see better mobile coverage rolled out as quickly as possible, but mobile companies are finding it difficult to get the data they need to check that a lamppost, bus shelter or public building is suitable for hosting their kit.
“These eight pilots will help solve this by modernising the way local authorities and operators work together, helping to level up access to better mobile coverage for millions of people.”