Media Release, 13 September 2019

Mobile black spot switched on boosting coverage for Barwon Downs  

Friday 13 September 2019: Locals and business owners in Barwon Downs are now benefitting from high speed mobile broadband and mobile connectivity after the recent switch on of a new Telstra mobile base station. 

Funded under the Federal Government Mobile Black Spot Program, the new mobile base station is delivering high-speed 3G and 4GX coverage. 

Telstra Regional General Manager Loretta Willaton said the new site would bring mobile coverage to the town and again expand Telstra’s coverage around Victoria’s south-west.

“Patchy mobile coverage locals experience around Barwon Downs is now a thing of the past – residents say it’s a huge improvement – and that’s all because Telstra’s switched on this new mobile black spot site,” Ms Willaton said.

“Locals are already telling us they’re able to use their mobile around the house where they’d previously relied on fixed line services for contact.”

“We know how important coverage and access to high-speed mobile networks are for communities in Victoria’s south-west – which is why I’m pleased that we’ve been able to switch on this new site.”

Home to around 130 people, Barwon Downs is nestled in the foothills of the Otways 22km from Colac.

The new site at Barwon Downs is one of ten mobile base station sites Telstra has switched on around Corangamite as part of the Australian Government’s mobile black spot program since 2016. Another three sites in Corangamite have benefited from Telstra small cells installed under the program.

The mobile black spot site at Barwon Downs was co-funded by Telstra, the Victorian and Australian Governments.

Under the Mobile Black Spot Program Telstra, in partnership with Local, State and Federal Governments has delivered: 

•     More than 600 mobile base stations stretching from Monkey Mia in Western Australia to Weipa        in the Queensland Cape York Peninsula and delivered coverage to remote central Australian    
       indigenous communities encompassing the APY Lands;
•     A further 200 wholly Telstra funded small cells to deliver coverage into areas where it is                 otherwise not economically feasible to do so;
•     Up to 100 million new handset and device registrations to the Telstra Mobile Network in the            past two years where new coverage has been delivered under the Mobile Black Spot Program; •     Another 185,000 square kilometres of new coverage to Australian communities (more than           twice the size of Tasmania), delivering coverage to 60,000 new premises; • More than 32,000         emergency calls made through new Telstra sites delivered under the program. 

Telstra has a long and proud history of investing in regional Australia. When Round Four of the Mobile Black Spot Program is complete, Telstra will have contributed more than $280 million to this program. This is all part of Telstra’s commitment to providing regional and rural Australians with access to the nation’s largest and fastest* mobile network.

*based on national average combined 3G/4G mobile speeds.
 
Telstra Media contact:  Matt Smithson – Telstra State Media Manager (VIC/TAS) –
E: media@team.telstra.com 
Media reference number: 112/2019