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Broadband expansion

Shaping the digital future

We are all becoming increasingly digital. New services and technologies permeate almost every area of daily life and business. New opportunities for coexistence and cooperation, social participation and economic success are developing. The basis for this are high-performance broadband networks, which must be available to private households, social institutions and businesses.

In Bocholt, the availability of gigabit-capable connections (incl. cable TV) is approx. 72 percent (as of 12/2021). In order to further develop this rate positively, various measures are being taken at the telecommunication companies' own expense or through funding projects.

Subsidised broadband expansion

The expansion of fibre optic networks in rural areas is often unprofitable for telecommunications companies, as the expansion costs are not in proportion to the expected revenue. In order to close this so-called profitability gap, the federal government and the state of NRW offer various funding programmes. The funding rate is regularly 80 or 90 per cent. The remaining share must be covered by the local authorities' own funds. The city of Bocholt is utilising this opportunity to gradually establish a comprehensive broadband supply.

From 2019 to 2021, around 1,000 households were able to benefit from a subsidised broadband connection.

In order to enable further private households and companies to benefit from a subsidised broadband connection, an application was submitted in 2022 for the so-called grey area funding. Further information on this current project can be found in the section on grey area funding in the city of Bocholt.

Most recently, Bocholt's primary schools received a subsidised broadband connection at the beginning of 2024. The project was implemented in close cooperation between the city of Bocholt and Bocholter Energie- und Wasserversorgung GmbH. All schools in Bocholt now have a gigabit-capable connection, which is essential for digital networking in everyday school life.

Grey Spots Promotion in the City of Bocholt

Fibre and broadband

In areas where expansion is not profitable and a market failure is identified, the federal government and the federal states provide support with broadband funding (federal funding programme Gigabit). The grey areas programme (so-called light grey areas) is aimed at private households with less than 100 Mbit/s technically reliable download speeds. In addition, socio-economic focal points, which include companies and agricultural businesses in particular, are generally eligible for funding regardless of a take-up threshold, as long as they are not already gigabit-capable.

The city of Bocholt has received a provisional approval notice for the funding project. Around 1,000 addresses outside the city centre core area are expected to be expanded. The fibre optic expansion is currently being put out to tender by the city of Bocholt in an extensive Europe-wide tendering process.

Further information on the federal Gigabit subsidy can be found on the website of the project organiser aconium.

Glass fibre

Self-financed broadband expansion in the city of Bocholt

In addition to the subsidised expansion, telecommunications companies can set up a broadband infrastructure at their own expense.

The city of Bocholt is currently aware of one specific expansion project. Bocholter Energie- und Wasserversorgung GmbH will upgrade the telecommunications network in the core area of the city to a modern fibre optic network at its own expense. Further information on this project can be found on the "faserfreunde" website.