Telstra has been awarded more than $7 million in government funding to supply new base stations across Victoria.
The new partnership with the Victorian Government will see 17 new base stations built across the state.
In a blog post, Telstra executive director for network commercial and construction engineering, Sri Amirthalingham, said the $7 million funding will be matched, taking the investment to more than $14 million.
“We will now commence the detailed planning and approvals process, with a view to connecting the sites by the end of December 2019,” Amirthalingham said.
On top of this, the telco has also committed up to $1 million to be used for the deployment of small cells and Telstra Go Repeaters for installation across Victoria’s emergency service operation centres and vehicles.
Among the 17 new bases stations are Benloch East in the Macedon Ranges, Annuello in the Mallee, Cobungra in the Alpine National Park and Buckland Valley near Mt Buffalo.
This is part of Federal Government’s Mobile Black Spot Program which involves building 650 new base stations.
In January, the Victorian government decided to abandon the Commonwealth Mobile Black Spot program, instead using the $11 million set aside in favour of its own system.
At the time it said the $11 million it planned to invest in the third round of the Commonwealth program, will now be used for its own system which will choose tower locations based on necessity rather than ‘political interests’ in regional Victoria.
“The decision to leave the Federal Government’s program is due to the Commonwealth failing to properly consult when choosing sites and a complete lack of transparency about how sites are chosen,” the statement said.