Google Fiber is coming to Huntsville, Ala., riding a city-built municipal fiber network.
Rocket City leaders announced the network in 2014, to "support an electrical smart grid and other municipal needs, plus provide the best of the Web for local families, entrepreneurs, businesses and academics alike," according to a post on the Google Fiber blog Monday signed by Jill Szuchmacher, director of the Google Fiber expansion. Google Fiber has now become the first ISP to sign up to use the network, which was built for open access.
Mostly, Google Fiber networks have been built from scratch, but the company has taken other approaches as well. It purchased a network from Provo, Utah; built its own network and used existing fiber in Atlanta; and now it's using a city-owned network in Huntsville, Szuchmacher says.
Huntsville has the highest concentration of engineers in the country, and is among the best places in the US for STEM workers, Szuchmacher says.
Huntsville Utilities will design and build the network. "Once the network is built, Google Fiber -- or any other broadband provider -- will be able to bring high speed Internet service to the city," Szuchmacher says.
Fiber is part of a basic city infrastructure today, Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle said Monday, according to a report on AL.com. Fiber will come first to businesses -- such as the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology -- and then homes.
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