It's been four years since Google Fiber has expanded into a new market. Most industry experts though that the Google Fiber "experiment" was likely over. But Google Fiber is back, and its coming to West Des Moines, Iowa.
Last week the City announced that Google Fiber will be the first tenant in a city-wide conduit network that will be built over the next four years. The $40 million city-owned conduit network will be financed using General Obligation Urban Renewal Capital Notes. Google Fiber will pay the City $2.25 per month for each fiber connection on the network and would be responsible for placing the fiber in the conduit to serve consumers.
In some ways the arrangement is similar to what has been done in Lincoln, Nebraska. In Lincoln the City built a conduit network and is leasing that conduit to CBAN provider member ALLO Communications so it can provide fiber-to-the-home services. But it's a new model of operations in Iowa where most city investment in broadband has come through construction and operation of a complete network, fiber and all.
City officials say that while Google Fiber will be the first occupant of the conduit network, it's arrangement is not exclusive.
There's been plenty of press about the announcement. Click on the links below to read more.
Des Moines Register: West Des Moines Set To Become Iowa's First Google Fiber City
Telecompetitor: "Google Fiber Awakens, Coming To Iowa"
Light Reading: "Google Fiber Returns to Expansion Mode Through City Pact"
It's interesting to note that despite the big media splash, West Des Moines residents will certainly not be among the first in Iowa to have gigabit fiber access. In fact, parts of West Des Moines and Waukee already have FTTP from Mi-Fiber, a subsidiary of GRM Networks. Other Iowa communities with access to gigabit+ fiber networks from municipal providers:
In addition to these, CBAN member ImOn Communications is building FTTP in Iowa City and Dubuque; MetroNet Fiber is building fiber networks in Ames, Davenport, and Bettendorf. And numerous small communities in Iowa are already served by fiber as a result of investment by independent telecommunications companies such as cooperatives and mutuals.
Across America, rural electric cooperatives are investing in fiber networks to help close the digital divide and provide access to smart grid capabilities. We'll focus on that topic for our next CBAN Lunch and Learn on Tuesday, July 14th at 12:00pm CDT.
We are excited to have two guests with deep knowledge of rural electrics' involvement in broadband. Steve Collier with Conexon will talk about the state of play in REC broadband efforts. Christopher Mitchell from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance will discuss trends - and barriers - for continued fiber investment by rural electric cooperatives.
Click the button below to register!
CBAN would like to welcome our newest Vendor Member, Huntel Consulting!
Huntel Consulting provides a wide range of services to its clients, including:
We welcome CEO Justyn Miller, COO Mick Herke, and Director of Operations Gaila Hayes to the CBAN family!
Lunch & Learn
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Presented by the Community Broadband Action Network and curated by Curtis Dean.