ARCEP strengthens resource pooling to help facilitate FttH network rollouts

Paris, 27 January 2014

While fibre to the home (FttH) network rollouts are proceeding at a steady pace, with the number of eligible lines having now reached three million, ARCEP is working to help sustain this momentum by completing the regulatory framework governing these networks. ARCEP has adopted a decision and a recommendation that strengthen FttH network sharing by reducing the number of very high density areas, where less sharing is occurring, and by defining appropriate solutions for buildings in these areas with fewer than 12 residential or business premises.

Adjusting the boundaries of very high density areas

Decision No. 2009-1106 of 22 December 2009 defines very high density areas as densely populated municipalities where infrastructure-based competition is possible, and stipulates that the list of municipalities that make up these areas could be adjusted should the need arise.

It was in relation to this proviso that, in its Decision No. 2013-1475 of 10 December 2013 , ARCEP amends the list of very high density municipalities to take into practical consideration the rollouts that operators have performed since 2009, and the technical and financial conditions under which operators are performing their rollouts. This decision, which was submitted to a public consultation that ran from 21 October to 18 November 2013, was approved by the Minister responsible for electronic communications, and published in the Journal officiel de la République française on 26 January 2014.

The Decision removes 43 municipalities (**), corresponding to 547,000 households, from the list of those initially designated as being part of high density areas. By strengthening resource pooling, this amendment will help facilitate rollouts in the areas concerned, and to provide residential and business customers with a wider selection of services to choose from. The decision also plans on adding the city of Poitiers to the list of very high density areas, in light of the nature and scale of deployments that have already been performed there.

The number very high density areas has thus decreased from 148 municipalities (representing around 6 million households) to 106 municipalities (or around 5.5 million households), which represent fewer than 17% of all households in France.

The affected local authorities and operators can now sign agreements locally for programming and monitoring FttH rollouts, based on the model drafted as part of France's superfast broadband plan. This in turn will allow them to secure investment plans and provide all public and private sector players with a clear view on upcoming deployments.

Definition of technical solutions for small buildings in high density areas

Following the public consultation that was held from 15 November to 13 December 2013, ARCEP is publishing a recommendation on the access conditions to FttH lines for small buildings of fewer than 12 residential or business premises in very high density areas, and located outside the low-density pockets - defined in the ARCEP recommendation of 14 June 2011 . The new recommendation, which serves to complete the one issued in 2011, is meant to enable coverage for all types of building, regardless of their size or location.

The following see table recaps the FttH architecture deployed in the different areas defined by the framework.

High-density areas Lower density areas
Outside low-density pockets Inside low-density pockets

For buildings with at least 12 residential or business units or accessible through a visitable sewer network: multi-fibre concentration point at the building entry point

3.2 million premises
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Concentration point of 300 single fibre lines, regardless of the size of the building

0.8 million premises
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Concentration point of 1,000 single fibre lines, regardless of the size of the building

Exception: a concentration point of 300 lines if the backhaul portion of network is shared

 

27.7 million premises
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* For other buildings (i.e. fewer than 12 units and not accessible via visitable sewer):
- general rule: concentration point of 100 single fibre lines (cabinet)
- special cases (isolated buildings): multi-fibre concentration point (manhole, façade, terminal)


1.5 million premises
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* Aim of the present recommendation
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The leading operators have expressed to ARCEP their desire to accelerate deployments, to achieve full coverage of the buildings located in very high-density areas, and have specified their technical choices. As a result, ARCEP is recommending (barring special cases) to install concentration points of 100 single-fibre lines for buildings in these areas that contain fewer than 12 residential or business premises, and which are not in a low-density pocket.

In addition, to optimise deployments and enable a complete and consistent mesh of coverage nationwide, ARCEP recommends introducing a system of prior consultation between stakeholders, including the interested local authorities. Among other things, this should make it possible to avoid unnecessary duplication of street cabinets, thanks to an increase in resource pooling for rollout schemes.

The adoption of these two texts puts the finishing touches to the regulatory framework governing FttH network rollouts across the whole of France.

(**) Appendix - list of municipalities in very high density areas affected by the amendment

 
Municipality
 
 
INSEE
 
 
Households (INSEE 2007)
 
Beaulieu-sur-Mer 06011 3 294
Cagnes-sur-Mer 06027 29 193
Mandelieu-la-Napoule 06079 19 092
Saint-Laurent-du-Var 06123 16 444
La Riche 37195 5 325
Saint-Martin-d'Hères 38421 15 122
Vandœuvre-lès-Nancy 54547 15 659
Roubaix 59512 39 458
Tourcoing 59599 38 169
Écully 69081 7 643
Saint-Fons 69199 6 991
Vaulx-en-Velin 69256 15 325
Rillieux-la-Pape 69286 11 827
Canteleu 76157 6 394
Le Grand-Quevilly 76322 12 257
Le Mée-sur-Seine 77285 8 254
Élancourt 78208 10 715
Fontenay-le-Fleury 78242 5 828
Guyancourt 78297 10 823
Marly-le-Roi 78372 7 693
Rocquencourt 78524 1 641
Vélizy-Villacoublay 78640 8 866
Saint-Mandrier-sur-Mer 83153 5 020
Épinay-sous-Sénart 91215 4 774
Grigny 91286 9 874
Ris-Orangis 91521 11 063
Le Blanc-Mesnil 93007 19 001
La Courneuve 93027 13 627
Épinay-sur-Seine 93031 20 049
L'Île-Saint-Denis 93039 2 918
Livry-Gargan 93046 18 163
Saint-Ouen 93070 21 205
Villemomble 93077 12 473
Villetaneuse 93079 4 188
Boissy-Saint-Léger 94004 6 213
Bonneuil-sur-Marne 94011 6 541
Chennevières-sur-Marne 94019 7 670
Fresnes 94034 9 882
Thiais 94073 12 128
Villeneuve-le-Roi 94077 7 895
Vitry-sur-Seine 94081 34 353
Franconville 95252 14 320
Saint-Gratien 95555 9 337
Total (to be removed) 43 Municipalities 546 703
Poitiers (to be added) 86194 47 825
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