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By: MarkJ - 14 January, 2010 (8:23 AM)
broadband nightshotThe Manchester Digital Development Agency (MDDA) have appointed Geo, a firm that builds bespoke dedicated fibre optic broadband solutions, to deploy a next generation network in the Oxford Road area of Manchester city (i.e. Manchester Corridor). The service will offer a true open access network that can be used by both residents and businesses.

The Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA) funded project will allow local residents to receive download and upload speeds of 100Mbps. They will also be able to buy services from different ISPs on the network; providing internet access, TV, telephone and other data services too.

ISPs will be able to lease the optical fibre from Geo to provide services to their customers. There is even the potential for services and applications to be made available for FREE without having to go through an ISP, though nothing like that has actually been announced yet.

Damien Bourke, policy & partnership manager for NWDA, said:

"This is the first step on a journey to help make Manchester an increasingly competitive international city – a city in which businesses can find new and sustainable markets which in turn will help drive the regional economy. What better place to start this process than the Oxford Road area, where next generation fibre broadband will only generate further wealth from the people, ideas and innovation that make the Corridor a unique place to do business."

Geo was awarded the contract in December 2009 following a successful tender to deliver the first phase of the Fibre-to-the-Premises ( FTTP ) network, which is the same FTTH style method that BT will use to reach 2.5m UK homes by 2012 ( the other 7.5m will be served by slower FTTC ).

The initial phase will provide connectivity to 200 homes and businesses around the Corridor area of Manchester. Geo is expected to start the first phase of network deployment in the spring. Further connections directly to 1500 homes and businesses, will be phased over the next 12 months.
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