Kouga moving into the digital economy with fibre roll out

Residents and local businesses’ internet connection are set to receive a hefty shot of steroids that will make an ADSL-line look like snail mail.

That is after they have fibred up, of course.

Kouga Municipality, in cooperation with Metrofibre, is rolling out high speed and high reliability fibre optic cables to almost every home and business across the region – not only pioneering a digital future for all within the municipality, but also setting its goal of transforming Kouga into a Smart City in motion.

Kouga Executive Mayor, Horatio Hendricks, said, “Internet access is becoming increasingly essential to everyone’s survival. The municipality has, therefore, been facilitating the roll-out of fibre in the region to ensure that Kouga’s people have access to world-class internet connectivity.”

According to him, the project will be rolled out in phases – starting in Jeffreys Bay (including Aton Bay, Paradise Beach, Ocean View, Tokyo Sexwale and Pellsrus), and Humansdorp. Other areas include Thornhill, Loerie, Hankey, Patensie (including Andrieskraal), St Francis Bay, Cape St Francis, and Oyster Bay.

“Residents will be informed via a letter when work will start in their area,” he said. “The work will be done with the least number of disruptions to residents. Where they can, they will tunnel under driveways.”

Hendricks recommended that residents install a fibre point during the build phase to save cost – even it they are not going to utilise it.

“It is important to note that the termination point provides the opportunity to connect to the internet as soon as an order is placed with one of the many open access providers,” he said.

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“If residents and business owners install fibre during the build phase, there is no charge. After the fibre is live, a service fee will be charged to have the installation done.”

He said that having a fibre point installed in your home, can make it more attractive for future potential buyers.

“Once connected, the network is expected to boost business productivity and innovation, deliver millions in economic benefits for communities and the business sector, and provide a platform for a new generation of ‘smart city’ applications,” said Hendricks.

According to him, the municipality is, furthermore, investigating the possibility of introducing fibre as a fifth utility in Kouga.

“The aim is to enter into a public-private partnership,” he said. “This will enable the municipality to become part of the fibre revenue stream in a time where there is a decline is traditional sources such as electricity and water do to load shedding and drought, respectively.

“Additional income generated will be ploughed back into the community.”

Local SMMEs will be used for the project, and there will be on-site skills transfer and training as the project progress.

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