Proximus has given update on the rollout of its open fiber network in the district of Leuven. In addition to a status on the city of Leuven and the neighboring municipalities of Herent and Kortenberg, explanations were given on the works in the cities of Aarschot, Diest and Tienen. By the end of 2024, Proximus will provide over 70,000 homes and businesses in the Leuven district with a fiber connection.
More than ever, Belgian citizens and businesses need reliable and fast connectivity. It is therefore important that they can rely on fiber in the years to come, as fiber is the ultimate broadband technology of the future. For residential customers, it allows all members of a household to (tele)work, surf, stream videos and play online games at the same time, without delays or loss of quality.
Fiber is a great asset for companies, enabling them to fully exploit all the possibilities of digitization and to remain competitive, flexible and innovative. In general, broadband networks such as fiber are now an essential part of public infrastructure, just like water or electricity. Fiber is also environmentally friendly, more energy- efficient and has a longer lifespan than any other fixed Internet technology.
An ambitious rollout of fiber in Belgium
Today, Proximus is already present with its fiber technology on almost every street corner. The next challenge is to close the last few meters into the home or company with fiber.
End 2016, Proximus therefore launched the “Fiber for Belgium” investment plan, with the aim of rolling out fiber to the majority of businesses and city centers in Belgium. Since 2021 the project was significantly accelerated and expanded, supported by the creation of the joint ventures Fiberklaar in Flanders and Unifiber in Wallonia.
Last June, Proximus announced its intention, together with a Consortium of Belgian financial partners, to bring fiber for up to an additional 1.7 million homes and businesses situated in areas with low population density. Such a collaboration would allow to extend the fiber coverage to 95% of all Belgian homes and businesses, and to ultimately offer a Gigabit network for the whole territory.
The objectives for the Leuven district
In the coming years, the broad area around Leuven will also gradually be supplied with fiber. In the city of Leuven itself, the rollout already kicked off in 2020. Today, over a quarter of Leuven’s homes and businesses can already be connected. That figure is expected to double by the end of 2023.
In the neighboring cities and municipalities, Proximus is not standing still either. In Herent, the first phase is almost completed, and in Diest too, more than 25% of homes and businesses can already be connected to fiber. The rollout there will continue until the first quarter of 2023. Works have started in Aarschot and Tienen, and in Kortenberg the rollout will start early next year.
By the end of 2024, the first phase of the project should be completed in all mentioned cities and municipalities. The ambition remains to continue to expand the coverage afterwards, in collaboration with the joint ventures, until 2028.
A clear and transparent information campaign
Proximus is committed to open and transparent communication with all residents and businesses in the areas where fiber is rolled out. The residents will be extensively informed about the rollout and the advantages of fiber by means of mailings and local information sessions, thanks to the mobile information point that regularly drives around in the areas, or via the www.proximus.be webpage, on which specific information on the progress of the works can be found.
For additional questions, they can contact a toll-free 0800 number, use a specific e-mail address or call into the local Proximus shop. In addition, Proximus is proactively contacting each business individually to see which fiber solution best fits their specific needs.
Pieter Vissenberg, Fiber Network Program Department Lead at Proximus, said, “The rollout of our fiber network is running like clockwork, with already more than 1 million connectable homes and businesses across the country. This investment is critical to the growth of our economy and to our digital society as a whole. Connectivity has become a basic need, and we are therefore very pleased to be able to introduce more than 70,000 residents in the wide area around Leuven to the benefits of fiber by the end of 2024.”