neutral, and
service and advice for your





For municipalities & counties,
municipal utilities, energy providers,
network operators.


Safeguarding the future

DISTRICT OF GROSS-GERAU – Safeguarding the future in GROSS-GERAU – The district of Gross-Gerau will be supplied with a faster broadband connection by Telekom and Inexio until the end of 2016 (a bit later in Erfelden and Crumstadt due to construction reasons) without any involvement of public funds. The independent economic expansion by the two companies has saved the district investments in millions. This expansion means significant improvement in the broadband coverage in the region. However, the ultimate expansion targets of the federal government and the State of Hesse have not yet been fully achieved, explained Thomas Schmitt, Broadband coordinator in the District of Gross-Gerau. As for private households, the goal is to ensure broadband speeds of at least 50 Mbit/s. In addition, there are still deficits in the connection of commercial, educational, administrative, and security facilities (e.g., schools, city hall, rescue services, etc.).

The next step is to identify existing deficits and come up with appropriate countermeasures. As stressed by Walter Astheimer, the Head District Councilor, the topic of broadband expansion still enjoys a high priority due to the immense importance that the network infrastructure has for the community and for businesses: “Currently, no one can afford to neglect this topic.” 

The consulting services required for the survey can be financed fully through the already approved federal funding, emphasized Thomas Schmitt. The cornerstones were set during a kick-off meeting in mid-October at the administrative district office. The meeting was attended by Walter Astheimer, Thomas Schmitt, and Oliver Laible, the CEO of Broadband Academy, which is the consulting company that was commissioned for the project. The primary goal is to close the still existing gaps and acquire as much funding as possible from the existing federal and state subsidies for further expansion in the district of Gross-Gerau. 

However, the funding quota, which can amount to as much as 90 percent of the total costs, is dependent on many basic conditions. The possibilities of obtaining more funding and possible funding quotas are not yet foreseeable. A corresponding funding application should be prepared during the ongoing survey. “We cannot get any subsidies if we do not try” was something that everyone at the meeting agreed with. The results of the survey should be available by May 2017, after which the next steps are to be planned.

Source: October 29th, 2016
Moving forward thanks to fast Internet. Broadband coverage is quite good in about 90% of the urban areas, and Grevenbroich tops the Rhine region in terms of Internet speed.
This was the report of the mayor, Klaus Krützen, to the council. Almost all areas have speeds of 50 Mbit/s and above. 82.9 percent of the region enjoys up to 100 Mbit/s, which means that Grevenbroich currently has the best coverage in the Rhine region.

As the chief administrator underlined, this high level of coverage was achieved thanks to the activities of Telekom through the Vectoring expansion, Deutsche Glasfaser through its establishment of a completely new fiber optic network in some regions, and the complementary services by Unitymedia.

In the city, only a few so-called “white spots” are left. These have speeds of less than 30 Mbit/s. According to Krützen, no provider is willing to undertake independent expansion in these areas within the next three years. These areas include Busch, Gubisrath, the area around “Am Gather Hof”, and part of the eastern commercial area.

These areas too can be supplied with fast Internet in the future. The council unanimously voted for a cooperation between the Rhine region. A wish to apply for a subsidy from the federal government on behalf of the cities and municipalities to finance the expansion of the broadband coverage in poorly covered areas through telecommunications service providers.

The target is to ensure a transmission speed of 50 Mbit/s or more if technically and economically feasible. The success or failure of the application will be known in early 2017. Until then, the federal project sponsor will decide on the municipalities to receive the funding based on an elaborate evaluation procedure.

Broadband Academy analyzed the Internet supply in the Rhine region and identified areas that currently have poor coverage as a basis for the cooperation agreement.

Source: NGZ Online

October 3rd, 2016
Rhein-Kreis Neuss
For companies, fast Internet has long been a strong location factor. However, many municipalities are still lagging behind when it comes to broadband coverage – and sometimes, not even aware of these gaps. By Andreas Buchbauer

Many parts in the world have long enjoyed Internet speeds in the gigabytes range. Digitization, industry 4.0, smart technologies, and the Internet of things – according to the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology – have the potential of raising Germany’s economic output by up to 82 billion euros by 2020 if the digital technologies are used appropriately and consistently. Broadband coverage plays a central role in the establishment of companies and is now just as much a location factor as the traditional infrastructural aspects such as transport network. The only fatuous thing is the fact that the digital highway is sometimes like a bumpy dirt road, and there is a lot of catching up to do if we are to catch up with the rest of the gigabyte world.

Jürgen Steinmetz, Chief Executive of the Chamber of Industry and Commerce (IHK) in Middle Lower Rhine, has been talking about the hot mush. “I would like to have an accurate overview of the areas with poor broadband coverage and how the broadband business is organized in the commercial areas,” he explains. “But in terms of knowledge and transparency, many municipalities are not as far-reaching as desired.”

We in the administration have been persevering in deep sleep for way too long.  “Many municipalities lack an overview of the situation in their sphere of influence,” underlines Steinmetz. This is disappointing. Without an inventory, there lacks a central basis for working out a solution – and this is indispensable if we are to compete in and be prepared for the future. “Fast Internet is crucial in securing the future of the municipalities,” he adds.

At the National Conference on Freight Transport and Logistics in late June, Federal Minister of Transport, Alexander Dobrindt (CSU), pointed out the importance of a well-functioning broadband strategy in Neuss. Commercial areas that still lack broadband coverage need to be connected to fast Internet as soon as possible. To this end, his ministry plans a special subsidy program that aims to connect poorly covered commercial areas to fast Internet through fiber optics. The goal is to establish a framework for the “gigabyte society”. This requires setting aside a total of about 350 million euros. The secretary of the Minister of Transport, Dorothee Bär (CSU), emphasized the fact that the current Internet speeds, some of which are only 50 Mbit/s or less, are anything but exceptional in the commercial areas: “That is not a data highway but rather a gravel path”.

Jürgen Steinmetz holds the same opinion. “Internet speeds of 50 Mbit/s are just too slow. Even a bridging technique such as Vectoring cannot have the desired effect in such a connection,” explains the CEO of IHK. “The announcement by the Federal Minister of Transport is a step in the right direction.”

In Rhein-Kreis Neuss, operations are underway to equip the region for the competition. A broadband cadaster is currently being developed in cooperation with “Broadband Academy”. The goal is to identify residential and commercial areas that are eligible for the publicly funded broadband expansion as well as residential and commercial areas that have poor broadband coverage. Plan proposals for the broadband expansion should thereafter be made for these areas. “The results of our broadband cadaster will soon be available,” assures Dirk Brügge, the district commissioner.

In addition, Rhein-Kreis Neuss also contributes significantly to the digital economy in the area around Dusseldorf. The state capital is planned to host one of six so-called DWNRW hubs. Last week, the green light was given for funding by the state. The hubs should serve as switch points to drive forward collaboration between the classic industry and start-ups – with the goal of developing digital business models together. The state of NRW is supporting the DWNRW hubs with up to 12.5 million euros.

Source: NGZ

July 12th, 2016

Contract signed! Counties in North Hesse commission construction company for broadband expansion

Kassel/Bad Hersfeld, June 30th, 2016 – North Hesse takes a major step towards high-speed Internet – for the large-scale broadband expansion project

The next great milestone. On Thursday, five North Hessian counties, i.e. Hersfeld-Rotenburg, Kassel, Schwalm-Eder, Waldeck-Frankenberg, and Werra-Meißner, commissioned a general contractor for the overall construction and planning activities following a Europe-wide tender. Now, nothing stands in the way of a timely realization of the fiber optic network.

The contract signing with Weigand Bau GmbH from Bad Königshofen took place at the administrative office in Bad Hersfeld. District commissioner, Dr. Michael Koch, CEO of Breitband Nordhessen GmbH: “In these modern times, fast Internet is a must for companies and private individuals. Our joint North Hessian initiative is our way of actively improving the attractiveness of the region since large-scale, high-speed Internet coverage will go a long way into ensuring that our region remains an attractive living and business area.” The general contractor now looks to start with the detailed network planning for the entire area to be covered, with the actual expansion set to begin in autumn of 2016. The first 150 kilometers of fiber optic cables should have been laid by the end of this year.

Marco Weigand, CEO of Weigand Bau GmbH: “We are very pleased to support the five districts with the expansion of the fiber optic network. The approval planning will now be a decisive factor in order to proceed quickly.” Weigand Bau GmbH will lay the conduits and fiber optic cables as well as install the distribution cabinets after the detailed network planning phase has been concluded. Afterwards, Netcom Kassel, as the network operator, is then set to install the active network in the distribution cabinets and supply clients with high-speed Internet.

More than 100 municipalities will profit from the fiber optic network. Managing Director, Kathrin Laurier, is optimistic about the planned expansion: “Thanks to the good cooperation of the counties, another milestone is now behind us in terms of supplying Northern Hesse with fast Internet. We now look forward to the expansion phase.”

The five counties, Hersfeld-Rotenburg, Kassel, Schwalm-Eder, Waldeck-Frankenberg, and Werra-Meißner, had already settled for “Breitband Nordhessen GmbH” in 2014 for further development of high-speed Internet in the region. Northern Hesse will oversee the overall coordination and expansion of the fiber optic network in the region. District commissioner, Dr. Michael Koch, hereby thanked the Hessian state government, the regional authority, and the regional management of Northern Hesse for the good cooperation and support.

Weigand Bau GmbH has many years of experience in broadband installation. The company has been commissioned with the implementation and network planning as well as the actual construction and installation of the passive network in the five counties. So far, it has realized numerous similar projects in Germany. The underground laying of cables is to be carried out in conventional, open trenches as well as using cable plough and trench cutting technology. Horizontal drilling systems, including the most modern rock drilling technology, will also be used.

Breitband Nordhessen GmbH was founded in February 2014 by the five North Hessian counties: Hersfeld-Rotenburg, Kassel, Schwalm-Eder, Waldeck-Frankenberg, and Werra-Meißner. It is committed to large-scale expansion of high-speed Internet and coordinates the entire development and expansion of fiber optic network in North Hessian counties. Commercial users as well as private households should be supplied with broadband connections with speeds of up to 50 Mbit/s.

Press contact
Breitband Nordhessen GmbH
Kathrin Laurier
Managing Director
Ständeplatz 13, 34117 Kassel, Germany
Tel.: +49 561 97062-14
Fax: +49 561 97062-22


Source: Breitband Nordhessen GmbH, from June 30th, 2016

June 30th, 2016
Anyone in Hamburg who needs an Internet connection should – whether an entrepreneur or private individual – be able to enjoy fast Internet speeds in the entire city. But the reality is quite different. Last year, the Red-Green Senate had called for improvement of the situation in the city. An external service provider has now taken up this work as announced by the CDU deputy, Carsten Ovens, following an inquiry by “Welt”.

All the same, there still lacks an accurate overview of the streets that currently have poor coverage – only a mere overview of coverage gaps in roughly defined areas exists. In Hamburg, these include parts of the Vierlande and Marschlande, some regions in Rissen and Sülldorf, Altonaer Volkspark, and Wandsbek.

Internet users in these areas do not even have access to bandwidths of at least 30 Mbit/s. The agenda of the Red-Green Senate aims to change this. The first robust interim results of the survey of poorly covered streets should be available by the end of June, but the expansion work will take years. According to Broadband Academy GmbH, the commissioned service provider, the work is expected to start in one year, as also underlined by the senate’s reply to the enquiry by the CPU deputy, Ovens.

Complete article:

April 7th, 2016

Rhein-Kreis Neuss and Broadband Academy GmbH from Kornwestheim have now set the course for broadband expansion. The goal is to provide fast Internet speeds that are desired by many citizens on large scale. A “kick-off” event at the Grevenbroich Ständehaus saw to it that the most important content- and time-related steps were substantiated. “In view of the digital transformation, we have to be at the forefront. In the modern world, a fast Internet connection is a clear competitive advantage for our region and its companies,” explains the district commissioner, Dirk Brügge.

The so-called market survey was commenced on March 31st. This focuses on collecting information on the activities of infrastructure operators, such as Deutsche Telekom, Deutsche Glasfaser, Unitymedia, or NetCologne, as well as data on existing broadband connections. The goal of the project is to identify residential and commercial areas in Rhein-Kreis Neuss that have a poor broadband coverage and that are eligible for a publicly funded broadband expansion. Expert and economically feasible proposals should then be made for these areas regarding the planning of the broadband expansion.

“The project should have been completed by July 31st,” reports Brügge. He and the Managing Director of Broadband Academy, Oliver Laible, together with Marcus Temburg, Head of the Development and Landscape Planning Office, and his staff, Thomas Lörner, were confident that they would collect the most important findings and planning steps during this phase.

In January, Brügge returned from Berlin with a funding assurance – a grant of 50,000 euros from Federal Minister Alexander Dobrindt. This money will enable Rhein-Kreis Neuss to pay for consulting services for fast Internet and come up with application documents requesting aid from the Federal Government for its projects. In a second step, the Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure plans to assist municipalities and counties with up to 15 million euros each for broadband expansion.

Rhein-Kreis Neuss is looking to have implemented a large-scale fiber optic Internet connection with a transmission rate of 100 Mbit/s in every household and every business in the medium term. Currently, the broadband coverage situation is different in cities and municipalities in Rhein, Erft, and Gillbach. The relatively larger local centers have a relatively fast Internet connection. However, it becomes a bit problematic in the villages and peripheral areas. The same also applies to many commercial areas since the number of customers per unit area is less than in residential areas, which in turn makes the commercial areas less attractive for network expansion.

April 14th, 2016
The path for large-scale broadband expansion and ensuring speeds of 50 Mbit/s in Saarland is now free. The “NGA-Netzausbau Saar” project, which is sponsored by the local administration union, eGo-Saar, emerged successful in the nationwide funding competition. Of the 13 million euros in projects costs, the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure will grant a subsidy of up to 7.8 million euros (60% of the total funding). This was announced by the Federal Minister of Transport, Alexander Dobrindt, and Prime Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer at the end of last week in Berlin.

This makes Saarland one of the first regions in Germany to receive aid for expansion of NGA infrastructures from the BMVI funding program. At the same time, Saarland is the first state that has set out to expand 50 Mbit/s broadband coverage to cover all areas with help from the federal government. The State Chancellery will increase the funding of the BMVI from its own funding by an extra 30% of the subsidy requirements (approx. 3.9 million euros). The remaining 10% (approx. 1.3 million euros) will further be borne by the municipal.

In the entire country, there is no comparable project where broadband expansion has been set for an entire state. It is against this background that the Berlin City Council’s approval for Prime Minister Kramp-Karrenbauer means more than just an assurance of funding for the project. “Our project is an example of good inter-municipal cooperation. It allowed for a joint funding application for all poorly covered areas in such a short time, which was made possible by the exemplary and trustful cooperation of all municipalities, eGo-Saar, and the state government. We were therefore able to display a special ‘strength’ of our country,” explains Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer.

With the funding from Berlin, financing of the state-wide NGA network expansion is now on a solid footing. eGo-Saar can now start implementing the project. The CEO of the local administration union, mayor Werner Laub, is confident of swift project progress in the future: “The positive decision of the federal government shows that our strategic approach is right. I am sure that we will be able to push our expansion project forward quickly, and we are already expecting significant improvement in broadband supply across the entire state in the next year.”

In addition to a swift NGA broadband expansion, the establishment of the joint administrative network, “Saarland Netz 2017”, is prerequisite for further advancing of digitization in Saarland and maximum possible exploitation of the opportunities that it brings along. This administrative network should further facilitate cooperation within the municipalities as well as between the state and the municipalities.

Looking at the broadband expansion in comparison to the rest of the country, Saarland has a good starting position since approx. 71% of the households in Saarland already have NGA (next generation access) bandwidths of at least 50 Mbit/s. Prime Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer and the municipalities in Saarland are particularly concerned with closing the remaining coverage gaps in the foreseeable future. “We want to ensure that all people and companies in Saarland are connected to the data highway. The expansion of NGA networks is a major contributory factor in creating equal living conditions and economic development opportunities across the state,” emphasizes the Prime Minister backed by mayor Werner Laub, CEO of the local administrative union (eGo-Saar) at the press conference today in Saarbrücken.

More information

In areas that are not connected to the NGA network (next generation access) by private telecommunications service providers due to economic reasons, expansion can be realized through grants from the government. The analysis of the broadband situation in Saarland estimates a financial requirement of around 13 million euros for the entire state. The launch of the NGA funding program of the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (German abbreviation: BMVI) in November 2015 opened up a concrete perspective for financing of statewide expansion in Saarland.

In December 2015, the course was set for a state-wide expansion project that was supported by many. Following the initiative of the Prime Minister, the state government, local administrative union eGo-Saar, and the municipalities in Saarland agreed on a joint expansion project under the sponsorship of eGo-Saar, which is based in the municipality and financed by the State Chancellery thanks to the municipal broadband advisory and coordination office. It has a high level of competence in regard to subsidized broadband expansion. The project, which was named “NGA-Netzausbau Saar”, aims to expand the network coverage in all regions in Saarland in a single, centrally controlled measure without any market-driven perspectives. It targets bandwidths of at least 50 Mbit/s. In addition to a small share from the municipalities, the close to 13-million-euro project will largely be funded by federal and state funds. eGo-Saar, in cooperation with the State Chancellery, started preparing a substantiated funding application immediately after this tenure and submitted it to BMVI at end of January (i.e. after only two months and before the end of the first funding period).

Media contact:
Press office
Phone: 0681/501-1126
Twitter: @saarland_de

April 25th, 2016