BT is to expand its fibre network to Scotland bringing superfast broadband to 277,000 homes and businesses.

The project, which will begin in 2012, will see BT roll-out a fibre optic network across 34 exchanges in the country, including including Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh and Glasgow, and is part of the £2.5bn investment in next generation broadband being made by the telecomms company. The network will combine fibre to the cabinet (FTTC) technology that see fibre optic cables laid to street cabinets and then traditional copper cables to connect homes and premises to the street cabinets, as well as fibre to the premises (FTTP) that continue the fibre link from the street cabinets to the premises.

"Superfast broadband will be welcomed by families throughout these 34 areas because it will help improve their quality of life and leisure and open new doors through online learning and fast access to information and services. And it's also going to provide a huge fillip (stimulus) for businesses," said Brendan Dick, director of BT Scotland.

"At a stroke, small and medium-sized firms will have access to big-business speeds at much lower costs, allowing them to find new markets, boost their competitiveness and create new jobs."

BT's announcement comes just weeks after the government revealed it plans to invest £100m to create a number of 'super-connected' cities in the UK where residents and firms can access speeds of between 80 and 100Mbps.

The Urban Broadband Fund was announced in the Autumn Statement by Chancellor George Osborne last month. Edinburgh, London, Belfast and Cardiff will be joined by six other cities, which will be revealed in next year's budget, in receiving a share of the £100m. The funding will be made available over the next three years.