The City of London Corporation has published a standardised wayleave agreement as part of a digital infrastructure toolkit. This has been produced following discussions and collaboration with the telecoms and property industries.
The toolkit aims to simplify the agreement of consents to tenant fixed line and wireless telecommunication service connections in multi-occupied commercial buildings. The wayleave agreement itself is intended to provide a consensus-driven standard document that meets the requirements of both the property and telecommunications industries. The accompanying guidance note offers operators, landlords and tenants advice on the key steps to agreeing wayleave documents in a timely manner.
The agreement and toolkit also take into account the changes to the statutory regime governing the relationship between landowners and operators of electronic communications services introduced by the new Electronic Communications Code, in force since December 2017. However they are not intended to address what is arguably the most controversial aspect of the new Code in certain circumstances: the consideration payable by telecoms operators to landowners. This is now to be calculated by reference to the open market value of the land on a “no-scheme” basis, generally resulting in lower sums being paid than was previously the case. It would seem that the market is still finding its way in this respect.
This initiative is a very welcome one and its adoption should speed up the installation of broadband in commercial buildings. The toolkit is available free of charge on the websites of the City of London Corporation and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, amongst others.