THE South West Development Commission and Connect South West Association are leading the push to have Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line broadband made available in the State’s South West region.
Connect South West – a stand-alone organisation that assists businesses in the South West embrace new technologies – will visit various locations in the area to collect registrations of interest for ADSL, which it will then submit to Telstra.
Telstra has drawn fire from businesses across WA’s metropolitan and regional areas that cannot access ADSL broadband despite fierce competition between the major telco providers and a high-profile marketing campaign by Telstra.
A recently completed upgrade to telecommunications infrastructure in Belmont ended a two-year wait for some businesses in the Belmont town centre. Malaga business owners, however, remain frustrated by the lack of ADSL service, with the City of Swan appointing a consultant last year to investigate ADSL demand in the area.
Connect South West chairman Michael Ashford said he had been unable to get ADSL since moving to Donnybrook more than a year ago.
He said his consulting business would be far more efficient and cost effective if it had a high-speed ADSL Internet connection.
“With telecommunications the way they are today I did expect ADSL in some of the larger towns in the South West and I’d be keen to see it brought here,” Mr Ashford said.
“I have clients from all over WA sending and receiving large files and sometimes it can take ages without ADSL.
“If more places in the South West could receive ADSL then there would be more people like me, people who work from home, who could relocate to the region.”
Connect South West manager Wendy Perdon said Telstra had indicated that as few as 30 expressions of interest in an area would trigger a review of broadband infrastructure in a particular location.
“To date, and we are only about half way through the campaign, we already have around 250 registrations of interest,” Ms Perdon said.
Telstra spokesman Andrew Gaspar said the telecommunications giant welcomed the involvement of the SWDC in encouraging businesses to register their interest in ADSL.
“ADSL will be rolled out to these areas when there is an appropriate level of demand, and the demand register is the first step in measuring the levels of demand,” he said.
“If more places in the South West could receive ADSL then there would be more people... who work from home, who could relocate to the region.”
- Michael Ashford
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