Written answers

Tuesday, 21 June 2022

Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment

Broadband Infrastructure

Photo of James LawlessJames Lawless (Kildare North, Fianna Fail)
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94. To ask the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment if he will provide an update on the provision of broadband services in the areas of Eadestown and Kilteel; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32156/22]

Photo of Ossian SmythOssian Smyth (Dún Laoghaire, Green Party)
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The Question refers to areas located in the AMBER area on the National Broadband Plan (NBP) High Speed Broadband Map which is available on my Department's website www.broadband.gov.ie.  The AMBER area represents the area to be served by the network to be deployed under the NBP State led intervention.  I am advised by National Broadband Ireland (NBI) that, as of 10 June 2022, construction is complete or underway across 26 counties demonstrating that the project is reaching scale. Over 67,800 premises can order or pre-order a high-speed broadband connection across 23 counties, with over 60,400 premises passed across 22 counties and available for immediate connection. To date, the level of connections is increasing on a daily basis and is in line with projections with some areas exceeding expectations. In County Kildare, NBI has advised that 1,214 premises are available to order or pre-order and 796 premises are passed with a highspeed fibre broadband network and available for immediate connection. 

Further details are available on specific areas within County Kildare through the NBI website which provides a facility for any premises within the intervention area to register their interest in being provided with deployment updates through its website www.nbi.ie.  Individuals who register with this facility will receive regular updates on progress by NBI on delivering the network and specific updates related to their own premises as works commence. NBI has a dedicated email address, reps@nbi.ie, which can be used by Oireachtas members for specific queries.

The areas of Eadestown and Kilteel are located in the Blessington Deployment Area (DA) and NBI has advised my Department that network build works are still ongoing in the area and are forecast to be ready for connection in Quarter 3 of 2022.  Individuals who register with NBI will receive regular updates on progress regarding the delivery of the network in the area.

NBI has made recent improvements to their website to enhance the provision of information to Oireachtas members. NBI has now completed a suite of changes, creating a portal that will serve as a means for Oireachtas members to proactively search for information relevant to their county/local area. The portal provides an up-to-date picture of NBI’s deployment schedule across the 227 Deployment Areas (DAs) in all 26 counties. A particular county can be selected to view an update of the overall number of premises in the Intervention Area, the overall NBP investment in the county, the number of premises passed to date and the status of each of the Deployment Areas with the anticipated date for connection over the lifetime of the project. The dedicated webpage can be accessed here: www.nbi.ie.

Broadband Connection Points (BCPs) are a key element of the NBP providing high speed broadband in every county in advance of the roll out of the fibre to the home network. Some 620 BCP sites have been installed by NBI to date and the high speed broadband service will be switched on in these locations through service provider contracts managed by the Department of Rural and Community Development for publicly accessible sites and the Department of Education for school BCPs. In County Kildare 3 BCP’s have been installed by NBI to date.  Further details can be found at nbi.ie/bcp-locations/. 

In County Kildare 4 schools have been installed by NBI to date for educational access. My Department continues to work with the Department of Education to prioritise schools with no high speed broadband, within the Intervention Area. Further details of schools in scope are available on the NBI website at nbi.ie/primary-schools-list/.

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