Too often we see the incumbent propaganda that proclaims all community broadband networks to be failures. But nothing could be further from the truth as there are over 340 such networks, some having been around for 12 or 14 years. True, there are a tiny number of problem children, but four or five out of 340 pretty much spells.
That said, these networks have not had, nor will they have, an easy road to success. If your community plans to follow in their footsteps and leave big shoes for others to fill, you have to learn from those who’ve gone before. In my new e-book, Building the Gigabit City, I include a list of 14 of the 35 communities that own gigabit networks and were on my Gigabit Nation radio show. with an honorary mention of the Kansas Cities since Google actually owns that gigabit network.
Take some time to listen to these interviews. Here are 14 hours of valuable lessons, insights and practical advice from those in the trenches getting broadband done. Download my book (complements of Gigabit Squared) and get the inside scoop on these and many more communities with broadband networks of various capacities and technologies.
- Don’t be mad at me, but Chattanooga, TN was first with a citywide gig for everyone and the very first guest on my radio show. So I felt I owed them the leadoff spot on the list.
- Bristol, VA’s network is a great tribute not only to effective planning, but also very effective marketing. This interview just overflows with practical and potent marketing recommendations.
- Cedar Falls, IA rocks the heartland with their gig and other broadband services.
- Cleveland, OH and Kansas City are both home to gigabit wireless networks. That’s right gigabit wireless networks.
- Columbus, OH’s gig network has scored major economic wins at home, and also landed them major recognition as one of ICF’s Top 7 Intelligent Communities in the world.
- Danville, VA’s network was a tremendous asset that helped pull the community down from one of the highest levels of unemployment in the country.
- Gainesville Regional Utilities in Florida is a great story of collaborating with universities to make gigabit networks possible.
- Indianola also does Iowa proud by its public utility’s gig network.
- Lafayette, LA is one of the oldest gig networks, and worked very hard against serious legal challenge. But they prevailed. (Interview is at min. 60)
- Maine’s Three-Ring Binder project is one of the more ambitious gigabit initiatives in terms of geography covered.
- Santa Monica, CA is not only home to great beaches but great gigabit broadband as well.
- Wilson, NC, like Lafayette, had to survive against what seemed like unbeatable foes, but survive and prosper they did. They recently announced the addition of gig service to their lineup of fiber services.
- Kansas City’s gigabit network isn’t finished yet, but I’ll give them an honorary listing among the others here because KCK and KCMO have scored some serious economic development wins even while construction is underway.
Pass this list on to your colleagues, stakeholders and others you know who are elbows deep in broadband projects.
Filed under: Economic Development, funding broadband, General analysis, Implementation strategies, Network business planning, public private partnership, Strategic thinking, Tactical thinking Tagged: | broadband, broadband strategy, chattanooga, community broadband, gigabit, municipal broadband, rural broadband