December 13, 2012 By Sarah Rich
Seattle and the University of Washington on Thursday, Dec. 13, announced their partnership with broadband provider Gigabit Squared to develop an ultra high-speed broadband network in Seattle neighborhoods.
The fiber-to-the-home/fiber-to-the-business network will leverage Seattle’s unused fiber, also known as dark fiber. The beginning phase will include a demonstration in 12 Seattle neighborhoods, which were chosen based on multiple factors, such as proximity to both existing dark fiber and University of Washington campuses and housing.
“This is a very promising proposal that can help bring 21st century infrastructure to Seattle,” said Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn in a press release.
According to a city report, no additional city dollars will be spent on the broadband project. Gigabit Squared will pay to lay fiber — more than 200 miles that will reach more than 50,000 households and businesses — and will rent the unused fiber from the city, creating a revenue stream for Seattle.
Service plans will start at 20 megabits per second up to 1 Gigabit per second.
The company also plans to provide dedicated, gigabit-speed radio connections to speed deployment to housing and businesses where fiber isn’t readily available, as well as high-speed wireless Internet access to subscribers in the 12 demonstration neighborhoods.
Once 15 percent of residents in the 12 demonstration neighborhoods sign up for broadband service, Gigabit Squared will deploy a phased rollout of the fiber services to the rest of the city.
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