Porirua back­ing Nel­son’s Gi­ga­town bid

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS -

After nar­rowly miss­ing out on a spot in the Gi­ga­town fi­nals, Porirua has thrown its support in be­hind Nel­son.

Nel­son fin­ished fifth in the first round, just ahead of Porirua in sixth place, and has joined Wanaka, Ti­maru, Dunedin and Gis­borne in the Cho­rus-run com­pe­ti­tion.

The prize is three years’ cheap ac­cess to 1 gi­ga­bit, high-speed broad­band, a $500,000 com­mu­nity fund and a $200,000 in­no­va­tion fund. The fi­nal­ists must now sub­mit a win­ning dig­i­tal strat­egy for their town and how they will use high-speed fi­bre to support growth in other re­gions – which is where Porirua comes in.

‘‘Porirua showed they have real tenac­ity and the will to suc­ceed dur­ing the last round, trad­ing us point for point right down to the wire,’’ said Nel­son cam­paign coleader Matt Dodd.

‘‘ So we de­cided to ap­proach them about part­ner­ing with us on the strat­egy if we made it through to the fi­nal.’’

The re­sult is that two peo­ple, Dodd and Porirua’s Gi­ga­town cam­paign man­ager Chris Lipscombe, will rep­re­sent Nel­son on a Cho­rus- or­gan­ised trip to Chat­tanooga, in the United States, to learn how the city has ben­e­fited from gi­ga­bit speed fi­bre.

Mr Lipscombe said it was about com­bin­ing the dig­i­tal strate­gic think­ing of the two ci­ties to cre­ate a gi­ga­bit-en­abled cen­tre of New Zealand.

‘‘We be­lieve that we need more than one Gi­ga­town to de­liver real ben­e­fit to New Zealand. If Porirua can’t be in the fi­nal, we want to con­trib­ute to a dig­i­tal strat­egy that will re­ally de­liver ben­e­fits for cen­tral New Zealand,’’ he said.

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