Move along the coast, say Hastings? These cabinets would give the homeless winos who seem to inhabit the prom, somewhere warm and cosy for the night!
BT's broadband boxes have run into planning opposition again, this time from a group of conservation societies on the south coast. Five societies have launched a campaign against the new "monster" street side cabinets the firm's Openreach division is installing in Brighton and Hove. Their concerns echo a chorus of complaints …
I'm sure BT have lots and lots of places they could install these upgrades in, rather than sticking them in Brighton. A pragmatic approach would be to say to the NIMBOIs "OK, we'll upgrade someone else instead. Have a chat amongst yourselves, if anyone complains to us we'll refer them to you. Let us know what sort of solution you want and are prepared to pay for - we'll see what we can do".
Then just carry on with the rollout in other places that are easier to work with and come back to Brighton in a few years time.
"mainly because they require power" is no excuse. Could someone please point out to BT that the age of ENIAC is over and everyone else (apart from the North Sentinelese, who still communicate with the outside world by shooting arrows at anyone who comes near -- the ultimate NIMBYs?) has gone over to compact solid-state systems?
...it does point out that all these conservation societies only ever want to preserve the 'nice' bits of any period. (Manu)factories and slums aren't considered worth saving so we end up with horrors like the National Trust and Prince Charles who think the only bits of the past we should have are those that look good on the back of a tea towel and can have a tea shop attached.
I live in a conservation area, and I wouldn't like one of the new BT green boxes in my street, unless they were Giant Green Steam Powered Difference Engine Based ADSL (GGSPDEBA - I'm sure they'll work out a better acronym.) Steam powered would be ace, an actual (proper oldschool) windmill would be better, but I suspect we'd only have enough room for the steam and said attendant urchin. They'd need an urchin.
Anyone should have the right to give input on changes to street furniture in their area. It's called taking pride in where you live. If you happen to live in a conservation area then it's even more important.
Now personally I'd rather have the service(*) but I respect these people for standing up for themselves.
(*)Actually what I'd rather see is BT reserving FTTC for rural area and went FTTP in urban areas. The RoI is more long term but then long term thinking is what's lacking here.
I've been nimby-ish in bristol and opposed one in our road. It's not just they are big and ugly, they wanted to put them on a build-out to help schoolkids cross a busy road, up against a wall that is listed. BT and all the mobile phone telcos think that pavements are unused bits of space for them and their vans, rather than the only safeish bit of the street for people walking. If they want to put them up, put them in the middle of roundabouts and make them look pretty.
You know, that strikes me as an extremely clever lateral-thinking solution! Roundabouts aren't generally used as anything but a place for traffic not to be. I don't know what the accidental destruction rate might be, but it isn't unknown for roadside boxes to get hit either, so...
Mr Loughran, I take my hat off to you. :)
So, if your local council decided to allow some company to install huge advertising hoardings on the pavement outside your house because the revenue would benefit the wider community, you would have no problem with this? It is not as if looking at the back of an advertising hoarding would be physically harmful to you, it it?
The street does not belong to BT so why should they be able to dump their stuff there with minimal constraints when everyone else has to jump through hoops to get planning permission to build anything on their own properties?
"So, if your local council decided to allow some company to install huge advertising hoardings on the pavement outside your house because the revenue would benefit the wider community..." Completely different issue. Will *you* pay the extra it costs for me to get a serviceable broadband service, because you want your street to look like something from Poundbury? Didn't think so.
"The street does not belong to BT so why should they be able to dump their stuff there with minimal constraints when everyone else has to jump through hoops to get planning permission to build anything on their own properties?" The street no more doesn't 'belongs' to the residents either. BT, like many other large and not-so-large businesses have a team that are dedicated to this task. They are 'expert' at gaining planning permission; they understand the planning legislation and the application process, just like other civil/structural engineers and architects do! Contrary to popular belief, they don't just stick a pin in an A to Z and place the cab there, neither are they merely doing this for shits and giggles or to directly piss off the suburban NIMBY, meticulous planning does actually go into it.
An aside; if you have to 'jump through hoops' to get planning you are doing it wrong, employ an architect or an engineer to do it for you.
"Typical NIMBY sillyness"
The sillyness was someone suggesting that anything is justified if done for the common good.
The NIMBY jibe suggests that I would be happy if the problem is dumped on someone else: that is not the case - I don't mind having such things in my street but would prefer them to be installed with some attempt to be less intrusive and not to take half of the available pavement. I fail to understand the ranting of some that BT should be able to install what they like, as if Internet access speed is the only thing that matters in life.
"Will *you* pay the extra it costs for me to get a serviceable broadband service, because you want your street to look like something from Poundbury? Didn't think so"
Well, you thought wrong. I wouldn't mind paying extra to avoid the the road looking like an industrial estate if I felt I needed the speed. As it happens, I value my home environment more than the speed of my Internet connection. Each to their own.
"The street no more doesn't 'belongs' to the residents either."
True but residents can't build in the street despite the fact that residents pay for the council to maintain it. Other utilities have to acquire their own land to site (and disguise) their equipment - why should BT be any different?
"An aside; if you have to 'jump through hoops' to get planning you are doing it wrong, employ an architect or an engineer to do it for you."
Regardless of which people you employ, planning consent is difficult to obtain in many parts of the country unless you are well connected. It depends where you live.
I'm sure BT's planners have sleepless nights worrying about the visual impact of their installations and of the disruption caused to everyone during works.
Everybody knows the simple solution for problems like this.
Publicly announce that you can't install any of these until the complaints go away, and drop a leaflet through every door explaining that the conservation society torpedoed their new super fast broadband along with a telephone number and address for them.
Stand back, watch the fireworks and then when the conservation society decides that it's not such a big deal because of all of the complaints then the kit goes in.
On the plus side, it would ensure that everyone knew what was going on... and not be so susceptible to backroom dealings...
"Oi, I see you want to put in a nice, new fiber cabinet there... too bad the residents mind it, see. Now, I happen to have a nice place for it, convenient yet out of the way... All I ask is a bit of lease that'll cost less then fighting the local council..."
Can't tell me that doesn't go on... a lot...
There is a box about 5 foot high relating to a mobile phone mast near me and it has the noisiest fans you ever heard. They are incredibly loud, and can be heard above the traffic going past the box. I can hear them for nearly a quarter of a mile away when there is no traffic. I hope BT have a better design or I'd be objecting to having a screaming fan anyway near me. (I know - not pop start material eh?)
This probably means the bearings have gone/are going.
One way to get them to repair this is to find a friend with a crossbow and get them to put a bolt through the fan. It has been suggested this is the only way the MNO's will actually come out and replace the fan. They seem to be firm believers in "if it works( i.e. not on fire) dont fix it".
p.s. This was suggested at a party by a telco engineer - when someone mentioned CPU fans - and yes he was drunk :-)
I think it is more likely to be a sensor than the bearings as they are running at what seems to be flat out all the time, rather than screeching.
I do like the crossbow suggestion although a decent stick would probably do the job too, and without the arrest for carrying a weapon (although not necessarily!)
Why do they persist with these nimby ingrates?
I for one welcome our new extra large street side cabinets packed full of communications wizardry. I have a spot for one next to my house on the corner of our street.
By all means install it there and give me super fast broadband, and just leave the Brightonians with their existing ADSL lines.
... I though the planning process WAS public consultation? You know, the little bit of laminated paper at the site that says what's being planned asn tells you who to contact if you have an issue with it?
There's also the whole thing of planning applications being on most councils websites. If these societies were so damned concerned about their town, they'd keep an eye on them.
I want, I want, but someone else can deal with the practicalities of it!
It is always far easier (and politically expedient) to be vocal about "taking care of our town".. until it comes down to time and / or money to clean it up.
Of course, if the vocal person can get a benefit together to raise some cash, I'm sure the (excess) money will eventually go to doing *something* about it... especially if the gala is more work / expensive than demolishing the abandoned eyesore. "We raised £50,000 (from £800,000) in donations! Enough to paint it an even pea-soup green (as it was the cheapest color at the store yesterday)."
We have them in Brentwood also. No protests here though!
However they 'kin huge compared to the normal BT Boxes -- which they leave in place!
Also some of them are very clumsily placed. We have one at a diagonal to the path in the middle of a park bench area - WTF?
On the other hand others are done quite nicely
S'what you get paying lowest price to contractors....
A genuine suggestion: Check your bell wire, if it's connected you may want to chop it, or get one of BT's "Broadband accelerators" (not 100% sure of the name) which effectively does that for you, with just a plugin thingum. A friend of mine lives in the sticks, in some valley in Scotland, his broadband was clocked at about 100Kb/s when he moved in, he chopped off his bell wire and now gets something like a meg.
I think the bell wire works like an aerial for noise, or something.
nb: check you know what you are doing before you do it!
but we have been through hoops.
We are just too far away, or not as the case may be.
Our site is in a village without its own exchange so it is fed from the city exchange 7K or so away. It then goes all round the village adding another 1.5K although we are only 500m from the cab.
Leased line £30K toput in the trunking??
I await with bated breath but guess the reality is that they will wait until we pay and then do fibre to the cab about 3 weeks later!!
At the mo we are looking at an improved service using pigeons!
Perhaps since there are so many comments any time one of these stories comes up you could include the details for the team in BT we could contact to offer space to host one of these systems, and perhaps a rental template which offers us free 100M down/up to cover the inconvenience of having it in our back garden or wherever
BT would be better off concentrating on areas where there is no LLU or cable.. and leaving the NIMBYs to sub 8 meg of Virgin...but I guess having 100% of the market is not as exciting as competing in an already crowded market place"
I assume you mean sub 8meg OR Virgin? as VM entry level service is now 10meg
Speaking of VM it wouldnt suprise me if BT are choosing areas already covered by FTTC with VM so they can compete with them on prices rather than looking at areas that VM didn't lay cables as there is no competition there so why rush to upgrade their services
NTL/Virgin has a single cable serving an entire street or group of streets.
BT's system continues to feed a single cable to /each property/.
It's very much swings and roundabouts. It means that NTL/Virgin have far fewer termination points (which is why they don't need as many cabinets and/or they can be smaller) but also means that entire streets are sharing the same bandwidth. It means that VM's service has additional contention because it's contended the moment the data leaves your property. If enough of your neighbours are hammering the link they can slow the neighbourhood down.
With BT's system the contention doesn't start until your data reaches the exchange (there is more than enough capacity from cab to exchange). You'd need the entire town to be hammering away (ooh er missus) to create a problem - and even then it would depend on the mix of ISP. And VM would also suffer in that scenario.
having said that, i've got one of these boxes at the end of my road, not really an eye sore any more than the old green boxes. if people really don't like it, paint it red with the royal crest on it. that should shut them up.
but i'm still getting sub 2mbit connection speeds. guess it's not hooked up yet. when i was walking to the station i saw them putting it in about a month or so ago - was temped to ask how much of a back hander did the installers want to get to connect to a self installed fibre line to my house?
I had a look at the BT website from that link of yours.
My router currently says : Downstream link speed 6014kbps, Upstream link speed 448kbps.
According to the BT website:-
"Your exchange is ADSL enabled, and our initial test on your line indicates that your line should be able to have an ADSL broadband service that provides a fixed line speed up to 2Mbps.
Our test also indicates that your line currently supports an estimated ADSL Max broadband line speed of 5.5Mbps.
Our test also indicates that your line currently supports an estimated ADSL2+ broadband line speed of 7.5Mbps. When ADSL2+ Annex M is launched our test also indicates that your line could support an estimated ADSL 2+ Annex-M broadband upstream line speed of 750Kbps and downstream line speed of 5Mbps."
So when they upgrade my area, my downstream speed looks likely to drop but my upstream will go up.
How's this for a BT record ....... which they assure me their engineering team is looking into.
Date Download Speed Upload Speed
Today 13:47 335 kbps (41.9kB/s) 748 kbps (93.5kB/s)
Today 09:15 1432 kbps (179kB/s) 746 kbps (93.3kB/s)
Today 03:00 6875 kbps (859kB/s) 670 kbps (83.8kB/s)
Yesterday 16:46 77 kbps (9.63kB/s) 611 kbps (76.4kB/s)
Yesterday 14:15 118 kbps (14.8kB/s) 707 kbps (88.4kB/s)
Yesterday 04:24 17005 kbps (2.13MB/s) 675 kbps (84.4kB/s)
Sunday 21:02 125 kbps (15.6kB/s) 603 kbps (75.4kB/s)
Sunday 18:03 85 kbps (10.6kB/s) 689 kbps (86.1kB/s)
Sunday 09:21 2234 kbps (279kB/s) 616 kbps (77kB/s)
Sunday 02:50 4324 kbps (541kB/s) 656 kbps (82kB/s)
Saturday 16:24 266 kbps (33.3kB/s) 666 kbps (83.3kB/s)
Saturday 16:22 326 kbps (40.8kB/s) 723 kbps (90.4kB/s)
Not all of Britain looks like a toilet. Some parts are quite nice and folk are trying to keep them that way. Anyone with any self-respect and a desire to live in a decent place takes the time and trouble to try and protect it. Your backyard is the bit of the planet you should fight for first. All they are asking is that BT (big, rich, generally useless) make a bit of an effort rather than dumping their street furniture insensitively. Like not sticking mobile phone masts next to schools, that sort of thing.
Good for them. If you all cared more about your own backyards, maybe Britain wouldn't be such an ugly mess. When did you last pick up some of the rubbish from the street outside where you live? Do you even bother to pick it out of your front garden? Do you even notice it as you step from your door into your car and then commute your way through life?
A pity more of Britain's population are not 'nimbys'. Perhaps fewer would use gravity as their primary means of disposing of sweet wrappers and junk food containers.
Lovely rant, and I'm sure the Daily Fail will be happy to publish - however you are overlooking the fact that connectivity is a small but important business driver. Consumers want it and businesses need it. Generally the economy doesn't rely so much on pristine concrete slabs.
A tidy Britain doesn't mean a wealthy, healthy or decent country. Fuck the looks - i'd rather it work first then worry about how it looks thanks.
I personally would suggest that fibre to the cabinet is better use of unused grey squares than doing sod all other than keeping your house price at it's over inflated amount.
FYI - anyone that wants to see one (as I doubt you have based on the bullshit above) there's a comparision here: http://img258.imageshack.us/i/img4921y.jpg/
And a single one here: http://img523.imageshack.us/i/img4926a.jpg/
Bar a few cm taller I honestly can't see what the problem is.
P.S. Can you tell me what phone you have? Got a tenner on with a mate that it's fruit based.
... but generally I agree as well.
People need to make some sacrifices, but let's face it - most companies will not make any effort at all if they don't have to, and it saves them a fiver. A good analogy would be sky dishes - in many cases they could be more discreetly installed with a bit of effort, but do you think the sky installer is interested in that ...
If you look at http://www.objectbase.co.uk/basingstoke/chineham/fttc/ remember these things are 1.8m high.
In the photos here they are up against a fence and don't appear too obvious. If something that big had to be installed I'd say that it had been done quite well in THAT location. Contrast that with areas like town or village streets where such a device could be much more obvious and cause problems on narrow pavements etc. If I look in my local, rather pleasent residential area with it's semi-detached houses set back from the road with low-walled gardens, something like this would look like a spaceship had landed IF BT stuck it just where they wanted. Tell me, would you like to be the owner of the house that has one of those in front of it?
The Brighton Conservationists don't seem to be NIMBY's as the spokesman was quite clear that they understand the need and welcome the opportunity, but they simply wish to be able to challenge BT if BT aren't sympathetic about proposed sites. Simply moving the unit to a side-street or alley-way could make all the difference, but I'm still not convinced that BT has done it's utmost to come up with a few alternative designs that would suit more areas. After all, why DOES it have to be a 1.8m tall green box in every instance. Electricity pylons are modified to suit the terrain, so does every component in these boxes HAVE to be in the same position each and every time?
These people act as if the cabinets are going to be blocking their front and back doors, forcing them to climb out through their windows. Maybe they envisage rushing home one day, desperate for a pee, only to find their prized porcelain potty purloined and replaced with a tall steel tomb bearing the BT logo and directions to the nearest public privy.
"if they are simply installed wherever Openreach finds most convenient"
NO, they're going to install them in the most INCONVENIENT places, clearly. It's not as if a company would want it's equipment to be in convenient places or anything, oh no. Just put the box under the pier or something, I'm sure the BT engineers can swim.
"we just want to be consulted.”
About what? They don't need advice on embroidery or basket weaving. Hearing the ocean in a sea shell doesn't quite qualify you as a telecoms engineer.
... welcome our new green, capacious overlords. Well I would, but unfortunately they don't see our district as worth conquering :(
Many things that used to be luxuries have in the fullness of time become ubiquitous and have in practical terms evolved, more or less, into a right. Running water? Electricity? Sewerage? Telephone? 56K? Well it's arguably time for decent broadband speeds to be considered as such.
Realistically, it will require government intervention and take years for unprofitable areas to be served, but that's no excuse for telling people they should move from their loved homes to get it. Sure the cabinets shouldn't be sited insensitively, but that should apply to any street furniture.
Even with LLU we will get no more that 6Mbps, so if BT want to put a cabinet on our street, let them. Oh and it will give the cats somewhere else to sit :)
Bigger cause they need power.
We have ADSL+ with cabinets that requires power. They are wider by %20, but thats it.
ADSL + (or ADSL 2+ as you probably mean) is defined by the type of card you have in either your DSLAM or MSAN in the exchange, absolutely nothing to do with the street cabinet.
The difference is that there are very few cabinet DSLAMS dotted around the placed for ADSL compared to FTTC (normally used to defeat TPON or for rural branch nodes), whereas each and every fibre cab will need a DSLAM in it, making them all much biggerand all need power, even in Urban areas where traditionally the multiplexer equipment is stored in the exchange.
Prince Charles may have his heart in the right place, but sad to say he doesn't seem to have the brains to actually do the job. There's a horrible fire hall he was involved in the design of, and it's a fucking travesty:
"How come NTL managed to lay fibre to the house without the need for huge street side cabinets?"
Thats because they don't..........Just a leaky bit of co-ax for the TV+BB and a couple pairs of copper wires stuck on for the Voice. "Fibre Optic Broadband" my a-*-e....
There's a picture at http://www.flickr.com/photos/mikecattell/4218894050/
"John Crompton, treasurer of the Muswell Hill and Fortis Green Association, said that the green cabinets have blocked pavements for pedestrians as well as preventing car drivers from opening their nearside doors."
I was trying to figure that last bit out, until it struck me that if the au-pair has rushed parking the X5 on the pavement outside the organic latte shop, it probably could be tricky squeezing little Oscar into his Bugaboo kiddy seat without damaging the optional metallic finish on that nasty green box thing...
For all those here shouting down the NIMBY's - (and I'm not about to defend them) it's all about BT seemingly riding roughshod over aesthetic concerns in the environment. If you live in Peckham High St then 'aesthetics' probably don't come into it. But the fact is that BT feel that they have the right to install boxes , cables and poles just about anywhere, without any real thought about how it fits in with the local environment. If you don't care about this then you, sir, are a philistine or a schoolboy.
This Brighton lot are not against broadband being brought into the area, what they're asking is for a little more sensitivity in the style and placement of the equipment. For those of you saying you wouldn't mind the box being in your garden all I can say is 'yeah, right'. See what that does to the value of your property. See how long it lasts before it's covered in posters/graffiti or door's broken. Or the road and pavement dug up and left in poor shape. See, it's not just the box, it's the whole thing.
I get out more, maybe some of you should too.
Are BT responsible for social problems? I am a telco engineer NOT employed by BT so I have no vested interest. Please explain your poster/gaffiiti argument. Will twats who vandalise things stop because "its been installed with sensitivity"? Will roadworks be made a thing of the past by this sensitive install? As for the value of housing, I would pay more for a home with broadband so what are you saying exactly?
Perhaps it is you who should get out more.