22 new sites including four mobile black spots locations announced for the region
Optus has announced it will build 22 new mobile sites across Western Queensland including 18 via standalone Optus investment and four via the Federal Government’s Mobile Black Spot Program – which will vastly improve mobile coverage to the region.
As a result of this rollout, Optus coverage will be extended by over 600km across the Cunningham, Warrego, Carnarvon and Castlereagh Highways. Currently, 14 sites have been completed, with another eight sites to follow by June.
The 18 Optus sites represent an $8.2M commitment from Optus to improve its network in the area. The four Mobile Black Spot Program sites are the result of $1.8M combined investment by Federal Government, State Government and Optus.
Vin Mullins, Manager of Mobile Access Planning at Optus said, “We are proud to connect these iconic stretches of highway in Western Queensland. We’re continually working to connect regional Australia and these 22 new sites will result in significant network coverage expansion and improvement to our customers’ experience.
“We’re also looking forward to working with Governments on the continued roll out of the Mobile Black Spot Program and thank all Governments for investing in such a crucial program,” Mr Mullins said.
Optus standalone investment sites:
Recently complete: Augethella, Barcoola Homestead, Mitchell Escarpment, Lurnea, Morven, Crotchdantigh, Mia Bend, Teddington, Dirranbandi, St George North, Mt Walpanara, Mungallala
To be completed: North Charleville, Charleville Central, Mangalore, Wyandra, Lonsome and Bymount South.
Mobile Black Spot Program sites:
Recently complete: Brucedale, Blue Lagoon
To be completed: Mirrabooka, and Nardoo.
The Minister for Regional Communications, Senator the Hon Fiona Nash, welcomed Optus’ investment, and in relation to the Mobile Black Spot Program sites stated: “In total, Rounds 1 and 2 of the Coalition’s Program will deliver new coverage to 32,000 homes and businesses across 86,000 square kilometres including 7600 of major transport routes via 765 new mobile phone towers,” Minister Nash said.
“I aim to help build the kinds of communities our children and grandchildren either want to stay in or come back to, and better mobile phone coverage is a big part of that.”
Queensland Minister for Innovation, Science and the Digital Economy Leeanne Enoch said the announcement is welcome news for many Queenslanders living with poor mobile phone reception.
“Mobile coverage is critical for people dealing with natural disasters but it is also essential for everyday life, business, tourism, education and social connection,” she said.
“Providing mobile coverage at key points along remote roads is important for locals and tourists alike.”
ABOUT THE MOBILE BLACK SPOT PROGRAM
The Mobile Black Spot Program is a Federal Government initiative to improve and extend mobile phone coverage in regional and remote Australia.
The Mobile Black Spot sites listed are part of the Queensland Government’s commitment of approx. $24 million to deliver 144 new and improved mobile base stations to regional communities across 54 different councils under the Federal Government’s Mobile Black Spot Program.
The Federal Government has committed $220 million to this Program, which has been co-invested by State Governments, local governments, businesses, community organisations and telecommunications providers.
In round 2 of the Program, Optus successfully secured $26.4 million in Federal and State Government funding to build 114 new mobile sites, with Optus co-contributing a further $36.4 million to provide dedicated connectivity to thousands of Australians. Optus’ bid includes funding for 65 mobile base stations as well as the deployment of 49 satellite small cells.
Optus Corporate Affairs
Tel: (02) 8082 7850