Calls to improve mobile reception

COOMA Monaro Progress Association (CMPA) has compiled a list of the mobile coverage black spots across Cooma, highlighting a number of sites in urgent need of an upgrade.

CMPA submitted their findings to the 'Mobile Black Spot Programme', a $100 million nation-wide initiative set to improve mobile 3G and 4G reception in regional and rural areas.

Ian Ware of CMPA said the submission has two main aims in improving mobile reception for residents and businesses on the Monaro.

"The submission has a two prong focus, we want to see more towers in the area as well as extending Internet out to these areas," Mr Ware said.

"Our suggestion is to not have so many towers concentrated in the one spot. Spreading these out so everyone has coverage is important.

"When the black spots are addressed we can improve the Internet access and speed which will help local businesses into the future.

Alleviating the pressures on Mount Gladstone reception towers is one of the association's main aims, with their recommendation to deploy 3G/4G signals at the former Australian Broadcasting Commission tower on Nanny Goat Hill.

At its optimum the Mt Gladstone tower covers a radius of nearly 16 km, however overuse regular causes disruption to its reception.

The submission outlines how the Nanny Goat Hill tower could potentially provide greater 3G reception for around 150 homes.

Mr Ware said the CMPA is hopeful of seeing two towers at The Peak and Jerangle installed to bring greater mobile access to people living outside of Cooma.

"At a meeting with the local MP [Dr Peter Hendy} we suggested a number of ways to increase reception by focusing on using composite towers," Mr Ware said.

"CMPA understand the Federal Government has seriously looked at this suggestion of redirecting towers into more prominent areas and reducing the congestion at one or two sites."

The programme will invest in telecommunications network infrastructure to improve coverage of high quality mobile voice and wireless broadband services and competition in the provision of these services.

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