When the University of Reading’s widespread campus needs WI-FI without disruption.

The challenge

With a long history traced over 250 years, prior to our installation, the University of Reading had sporadic Wi-Fi across its premises, but with so many of its students and staff using wireless devices such as laptops, mobiles and tablets, Wi-Fi connectivity needed an overhaul.

The campus environment was challenging because of the number and variety of academic and residential buildings involved. This required a considered approach when installing the cabling routes, to navigate the different environments and ensure that the appearance of the properties was unchanged. In short, the cabling had to be almost invisible, without any modification to the buildings.

Our team also had to meet the needs of a number of different stakeholders. Not only the university but also UPP, the company which manages the university’s student accommodation, who had their own requirements for the Wi-Fi installation. The most important desire was a quick deployment with as minimal disruption as possible. The team had to be flexible – such as selecting the times they worked carefully and making as minimal noise as possible – to ensure they met the requirements of the brief.

Our longstanding 15 year relationship with the University of Reading meant that it trusted us with this sensitive installation. We provided a dedicated project manager who was responsible for ensuring the installation was done on time and to specification, while also being on-hand to resolve any issues arising at each of the three campuses. This carefully planned and considered approach to the project is why we continue to be the University of Reading’s framework contractor of choice.

The outcome

SSE Enterprise Telecoms installed Wi-Fi throughout the University of Reading’s academic buildings and halls of residences. The two-phase project involved three campuses – London Road and Whiteknights in Reading and Greenlands in Henley – which are made up of a combination of purpose built and older buildings used by the university. Its 17,040 students, 4,000 members of staff and guests now have full use of the Wi-Fi network, ensuring their studies aren’t impinged by poor connectivity.

The installation took four months in total and succeeded in causing as little disruption as possible to students. The team was able to quickly and discretely design, build and set-up the cabling solutions across the various buildings, ensuring that a good Wi-Fi service is available across the entire university.

About the University of Reading

The University of Reading is ranked in the top one percent of universities in the world. It is a global University that enjoys a world-class reputation for teaching, research and enterprise.

The University was established in 1892, received its Royal Charter in 1926 and has developed into a leading force in British and international high education. Delivering a world-class student experience, research-led teaching and its graduate employability record is excellent. The number of students going on to higher level study is well above the national average.


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