Cornerstone is partnering with Freshwave to upgrade existing infrastructure to enable multi-operator 4G and 5G connectivity at street level using dark fibre and small cells.
Mobile infrastructure services provider Cornerstone is partnering with connectivity infrastructure-as-a-service provider Freshwave to deliver a mobile connectivity pilot for the City of London Corporation.
Upgrading the existing infrastructure will make it capable of delivering multi-operator 4G and 5G connectivity at street level using dark fibre and small cells.
Small cell infrastructure
The aim is to bolster the small cell communication infrastructure and, if the pilot is successful, the ambition is for a City-wide deployment that will deliver faster mobile connectivity speeds across the Square Mile.
Part of Cornerstone’s concession with the City Corporation, the 10-site pilot will run along approximately 1km of Queen Victoria Street. It will pass sites including Bank, Mansion House, the Millennium Bridge and Blackfriars and is expected to be live from October 2022.
“This new deal will activate a 5G infrastructure pilot to all mobile networks this year which will make the City even more accessible and better connected for visitors, workers and residents”
Freshwave will be installing or upgrading City Corporation street assets so that the same asset can be used by multiple mobile network operators (MNOs). The shareable infrastructure will allow improved connectivity while minimising the amount of street equipment, the company reports.
“This new deal will activate a 5G infrastructure pilot to all mobile networks this year which will make the City even more accessible and better connected for visitors, workers and residents,” said City of London Corporation streets and walkways committee chairman, Graham Packham. “It is helping to drive forward momentum in the Square Mile’s recovery from the pandemic and will boost the City’s attractiveness for talent.”
Using small cell technology, which enhances 4G and 5G connectivity, Freshwave will work with the MNOs to deliver an improved user experience for mobile users within the pilot area.
Bespoke antennas will be installed on the upgraded infrastructure and with multiple pieces of telecoms equipment being housed in the accompanying cabinets, there will be fewer devices needed on the street assets themselves. The cabinets will be connected via dark fibre.
Freshwave’s wireless environments in the UK include several central London boroughs and Docklands. Simon Frumkin, Freshwave’s CEO, said: “I’m pleased that we’re partnering with Cornerstone on this prestigious project. The City of London is one of the pre-eminent financial districts in the world and we’re proud to be bringing our leading multi-operator network service expertise to this pilot.”
Denis Coakley, Cornerstone’s chief operating officer, added: “As a long-standing partner of the City of London Corporation, we’re looking forward to facilitating the next step in the evolution of the City’s connectivity with Freshwave. Deploying the latest technology, in the newest ways, is critical to delivering the cutting-edge connectivity the City deserves.”