Three Connecticut cities are acting together to seek a gigabit network. The goal is to make connectivity available on a wholesale open access basis that would enable multiple service providers to compete for end user business.
The three cities are New Haven, Stamford and West Hartford – and in issuing a request for quotation last week, they appear to have paid close attention to the experiences of communities that have preceded them in pursuit of gigabit opportunities. Officials of the cities speaking on a panel at the Broadband Communities economic development conference in Springfield, Mass. this week reportedly told attendees that they believe they have three key benefits to offer network operators who might respond to the RFQ. These include an extensive state fiber network, streamlined right-of-way processes and a single administrative point of contact for infrastructure builds.
Connecticut’s statewide fiber network, dubbed Nutmeg Network, uses an open access approach and offers 10 Gbps connections to all 169 municipalities in the state, reports Broadband Breakfast.
Open Access Gigabit
As more and more gigabit networks are being deployed, with many more in the planning phase, the body of knowledge about what works and what doesn’t work is growing. Several organizations, including Gig.U and CTC Technology & Energy have documented gigabit best practices they have identified – and all three of the benefits that the Connecticut cities cite are examples of those best practices.
The idea of neighboring communities working together to pursue gigabit connectivity is in itself a best practice. Some stakeholders believe several North Carolina cities that persuaded AT&T to build gigabit networks for them would not have succeeded if they had each worked independently of each other.
Most gigabit network plans to date have involved a single network operator that will build the network and offer service, but the idea of an open access gigabit network is not unprecedented. iTV3 plans to build an open access gigabit network in Champaign-Urbana, Ill.