Date: 20th November 2014
We are in the final rounds of the Gigatown Ultra Fast Broadband competition and voting on the plans for Gig Success is underway (have you cast your vote yet?). From the beginning we’ve been behind the GigatownWanaka campaign to secure Ultra Fast Broadband. Let’s take a look at GigatownWanaka’s vision, what the future may hold for our town with Gig connectivity, and why Wanaka is already a winner.
The vision is for Wanaka to be a community:
While ultra fast broadband will help make this vision a reality, we don’t have to wait until the end of the Gigatown competition to be winners. The community collaboration that has come about as a result of the competition is already bringing people together to create economic and lifestyle opportunities.
The team behind Wanaka’s entry in the Gigatown Competition are not waiting for a winning result to realise their vision. They have taken the future into their own hands and set up a new incubator-style facility in the centre of town called The Cell. It is to open in the old police station on Helwick Street next month.
Phase one will make office facilities like desk space, phone, printing and internet available at accessible rates for small businesses. Further development of the building after opening will add meeting and calling rooms plus an even faster Internet connection as Wanaka town centre’s UFB infrastructure is updated. Organisers also hope to employ a permanent staff member onsite.
GigatownWanaka campaign manager, Kelly Good said whilst The Cell’s opening is planned to coincide with the end of the Gigatown competition, development of the hub will take place regardless of the result.
“Win or lose, this is happening. The Cell is all about growing the local economy and making things easy for entrepreneurs who want to develop their business idea in Wanaka. It will be a truly collaborative space not just with office facilities but also access to the people and organisations that can help entrepreneurs take their business to the next level,” she said.
“I recently visited Chattanooga in the US along with representatives of all other towns in the Gigatown final. Chattanooga was the first town in the world to enjoy one gigabit per second internet access and the inspiration for the New Zealand competition. I came away full of ideas about how the Wanaka community could embrace their spirit of innovation.
“When people drive into town, we want them to be inspired by the business opportunities here as well as the people and landscape,” Kelly said.
The potential for Wanaka’s growth does not only lie in the hands of locals. If and when we receive gigabit connectivity, there are other businesses looking at setting up satellite offices here. For example:
Craig Elliot, Co-founder and CEO, see Wanaka as having a true opportunity to develop a ‘Design Centre’ incorporating talented professionals that focus on the user interaction and graphic talents of professionals. “Pertino is excited about the opportunity to work with the present designers in Wanaka but also to invest in Wanaka to attract more talent to one of the beautiful places on earth. We think that the distinct lifestyle benefits could attract the best and brightest and be a real asset to our company. With high speed networks offered by Gigatown and modern twenty four hour video conferencing technology we envision a ‘local’ Pertino office that just happens to be 7000 miles away.
LincSpun Group CEO’s vision was to develop a yarn that could be used in performance apparel and further research and development in to the yarn ensured this. Independent testing has shown the LincSpun Technology produces one of the most durable, versatile and high performance yarns on the market. Wanaka is seen as a natural fit in terms of environment and culture to locate R&D services, given its proximity to the product source.
More from us about the gigatownWanaka campaign: