Edinburgh public attractions to get free wi-fi

Improvements are to be made in Edinburgh WiFi. Picture: Greg Macvean
Improvements are to be made in Edinburgh WiFi. Picture: Greg Macvean
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PUBLIC attractions such as the Royal Botanic Garden and the Scott Monument are set to get free wi-fi thanks to a £150 million boost.

A raft of community sports centres across the Capital will also benefit from the scheme which will see 1000 buildings in cities across the UK become hot spots. The rollout is part of the UK Government’s investment programme which aims to transform the digital capability of cities.

The announcement comes three months after a deal to roll out free wi-fi across the city centre by the Festival season collapsed after the provider went bust.

Some of the hot spots have already gone live while the rest are all on track to be up and running by March 2015. Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael said: “Whether you live in one of our major cities or in one of our most remote communities, the UK Government is working to ensure that Scotland is at the heart of the UK’s digital transformation.

“Wi-fi is a prime example of cutting-edge technology that has increasingly become an essential part of everyday life.

“Today’s announcement brings this transformation into the heart of Scottish cities and some of the country’s most recognisable locations.

“This announcement together with our ongoing work to bring superfast broadband to rural locations across the country represents substantial investment by the UK Government and is great news for Scottish businesses, families and communities.”

The buildings likely to offer free wi-fi include the National Museum of Scotland, the Scottish National Gallery and the Royal Botanic Garden. The proposed locations are subject to change and relevant planning permissions being obtained.

Digital Economy Minister Ed Vaizey said: “The digital landscape of the UK is undergoing a period of tremendous improvement and is all part of the government’s long-term economic plan.

“For business, visitors and the UK public, accessing wi-fi in our cities is absolutely vital. I’m delighted this Government scheme is on track.

“These free hot spots will be instrumental in making UK cities even more attractive as places to not only do business, but to visit as well.”

NET GAINS ACROSS THE CAPITAL

• City Art Centre

• Museum of Edinburgh

• Museum of Childhood

• Writers’ Museum

• People’s Story

• Scott Monument

• Nelson Monument

• Museums Collection Centre

• Lauriston Castle

• Old Observatory House

• Trinity Apse

• Church Hill Theatre

• Usher Hall

• National Museum of Scotland

• Scottish National Gallery

• Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art

• Scottish National Portrait Gallery

• Festival Theatre

• The King’s Theatre

• Royal Botanic Garden

• Edinburgh Festival Fringe

• Royal Commonwealth Pool

• Meadowbank sports centre

• Craiglockhart sports centre

• Gracemount sports centre

• Drumbrae sports centre

• Leith Victoria pool

• Glenogle pool

• Dalry pool

• Jack Kane Centre

• Kirkliston sports centre

• Portobello Swim Centre

• Old City Observatory and Dome

• Edinburgh International Climbing Arena