Brisbane Council cans i3 sewer fibre deal: reports

By Ry Crozier on Feb 23, 2011 12:45 PM
Filed under Communications

Report suggests looking for alternative provider.

Brisbane City Council has reportedly dumped plans to deploy fibre optic internet cables in the city's sewer system.

The council had touted a commercial deal with i3 Group Asia Pacific to deploy the fibre-to-the-home network in July last year.

i3 was scheduled to begin the rollout early this year.

But reports by the Brisbane Times, The Courier Mail and City News indicated that the i3 deal had been canned less than seven months after it was first announced.

And a tweet by Brisbane City Councillor for Deagon Ward, Victoria Newton, appeared to confirm the i3 deal was off.

Lord Mayor Campbell Newman was quoted as saying that council would no longer be dealing with i3, as he was reportedly unhappy with their progress on the project.

City News, meanwhile, quoted Newman as saying that council would seek alternative "internet providers", suggesting that a private FTTH network could still be deployed before the National Broadband Network rolled intro metropolitan Brisbane.

The sewer fibre rollout plan had led to concerns that council could find itself on the wrong side of planned laws designed to prevent private companies from "cherry picking" prime metropolitan locations for fibre before the NBN could roll past.

The Government introduced the draft cherry-picking laws to parliament in November last year. They were yet to be passed into law.

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