Minister for Innovation, Science and the Digital Economy Leeanne Enoch announced 39 locations across regional communities in Queensland earlier this month.
A small cell is a miniature version of a standard mobile base station. Each small cell will provide extra 4G mobile connectivity over a coverage footprint of approximately 200 to 300 metres.
The 4G small cells are in addition to 144 mobile base stations secured under the state’s $24 million co-investment in the Australian Government’s Mobile Black Spot Program (MBSP), which have a coverage radius of 1-2 km or more.
Mayor Cr Kerry Hayes said six sites in the Central Highlands had been approved under the MBSP program so far.
These sites are Takarakka Bush Camp, Carnarvon Wilderness Lodge, Carnarvon Gorge Visitor Centre, Fork Lagoons, Dingo and Bogantungan/Willows.
Fork Lagoons was completed in February 2017, while the remaining sites are expected to be on air by the end of the year.
‘Council has lobbied fiercely for improved mobile coverage for our region, and the State Government’s announcement is another big step in the right direction,’ Cr Hayes said.
‘Black spots are a major issue for our rural communities. For too long our residents have dealt with unwelcome drop-outs and connectivity issues. Reliable communication is paramount for small businesses, schools, landholders and important services, so we are very grateful for this boost in telecommunications infrastructure.
‘But there is still a long way to go, so we will continue to strongly advocate for improved mobile services across our region.’
Cr Hayes said council has already identified a number of priority sites for round three of the MBSP.
These include Anakie, two sites along Dawson Development Rd, Lochington, the Sapphire Gemfields and Keilambete Rd.
For more information and a map of 4G small cell and mobile base station locations visit www.qld.gov.au/MobileCoverage