Privately-held Allied Fiber yesterday announced it is investing $140 million to build out Phase I of “a new, network-neutral, high-count dark fiber, colocation and wireless tower integrated system,” that will link New York City, Chicago and Ashburn, Va., as well as points in-between. Expected to be completed in Q4 2010, the integrated network backbone will “address the numerous backhaul and capacity issues that exist in the marketplace today,” commented Hunter Newby, Allied’s CEO in a news release.
Allied points out that trans-Atlantic bandwidth demand has grown at a compounded annual rate of 47% between 2004 and 2009 and is expected to continue growing strongly over the next five years, this according to TeleGeography, while In-Stat forecasts that 90,000 Gbps of last-mile, backhaul network capacity will be needed by the end of 2013 to support the world’s cellular and WiMAX networks.
New York-based Allied will be running their dark fiber, colocation facilities and wireless towers across property owned several major railroads and other right-of-way owners, including Norfolk Southern, with whom the company recently concluded definitive agreements. Direct connections with submarine cable systems linking the Atlantic, Caribbean, Latin American and Pacific cables are planned, reducing latencies and provider higher capacities between these points.
According to Allied, the first phase of the system will provide a combined 648 dark fibers, nineteen 700+ sq ft colocation facilities and 300 tower sites. Neutral colocation facilities will be placed every 60 miles along the eventual 11,548 route-mile fiber network. Allied plans on deploying a 432-count, long haul cable coupled with the 216-count, short-haul cable composed of Single-Mode (SMF) and Non-Zero Dispersion Shifted (NZDSF) fibers. The construction will take place over a six phase plan, with phase one expected to be completed by the end of the fourth quarter of this year. Allied is looking to sign up customers, which potentially include the large landline and wireless telecom operators, cable system providers, submarine cable system operators and network operators providing backbone network infrastructure to smaller rural carriers, cooperatives and cable TV companies.
A new multi-duct design provides for intermediate access to the long-haul fiber duct, enabling all points between the major cities to gain access. “This network specifically manages competing systems in a common, carrier-neutral infrastructure offering ownership and management of individual fiber pairs,” explained Rory J. Cutaia, Allied’s executive chairman.
Combining short- and long-haul dark fiber connections to landline and wireless carriers, along with colocation facilities will provide a new standard for interconnection, “one that does not yet exist in the United States on this scale,” according to the company.