Rural areas enjoying better cell coverage

Selwyn news
Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Rural communities are enjoying better economic and social opportunities thanks to improved local cell phone coverage, says Selwyn MP Amy Adams.

“An area the size of 450,000 rugby fields has been added to the country's cell network in just two years and rural areas are reaping the benefits,” says Adams.

“34 new cell towers have been built throughout the country since 2014, including the cell tower at Castle Hill, which has led to better local cell coverage”.

Adams says that better cell coverage helps drive economic development and enables rural Selwyn to take part in the digital economy.

“It’s also essential for emergency situations and makes personal life more convenient for people living and working in remote areas,” adds Adams.

The new towers are a result of requirements set in the auction of the 700 MHz band of radio spectrum, won by Spark and Vodafone in 2014. Under the agreement they were required to build new towers in new rural areas in the first five years after the purchase.

The program has added 3,825 square kilometres to the country’s cell network, and more towers are scheduled to be built in coming years.

“Improving rural connectivity is a priority for the Government. The project is complemented by the Government’s Rural Broadband Initiative, and both programmes are helping boost Selwyn’s local economy and supporting our rural community,” says Adams.