In September 2014 London Mayor Boris Johnson announced that he would be supporting the establishment of a Connectivity Rating Scheme in London. The objective being to develop a tool that would allow property managers to :-

  • access information about their property’s internet connectivity levels
  • incentivise them to improve the connectivity of their properties and
  • to enable tenants to identify properties that meet their connectivity needs.

The Scheme was launched in June 2015 and the tender to provide the service was awarded to WiredScore, an organisation that operates similar initiatives in New York and San Francisco.

As part of the launch the GLA also created an interactive Connectivity Map that identifies the broadband speeds that are available across London. You can view this map on the website. The vast areas of red (which depicts areas with slow broadband) in the City of London highlights that connectivity can be a real issue for commercial tenants.

Wiredscore awarded its first connectivity certifications in October 2015. The process for certification is that a Landlord or Property Manager takes a short survey to receive an instant preliminary certification level. This initial certification is private and is based on factors such as the quality of the building’s connections, infrastructure, access and choice. To convert this preliminary certification into an official public one, the Landlord or Manager needs to schedule a building review with Wiredscore’s engineers who will validate the data that has been provided.

There are four types of certification available:

  • Certified – where the building meets minimum standards;
  • Silver – where the building meets the needs of most commercial tenants;
  • Gold – where the building has diverse internet connectivity; and
  • Platinum – where the building has the best level of connectivity.

We are yet to see how effective the Scheme is at improving connectivity in London. Currently there are only 11 London buildings that have been certified and due to the fact that the initial survey is confidential, we cannot tell how many Landlords are seeking certification at this time.

Posted on 23/11/2015 in Legal Updates

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