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Provo to Spend $500,000 to Find Fiber Before Google Acquires It

Provo to Spend $500,000 to Find Fiber Before Google Acquires It

Last month, the Provo City Council approved Google’s plans to acquire the city’s existing fiber optic network, iProvo, for only $1 so that Google could bring its 1 Gbps Internet service there. This would allow Google to offer a basic five-megabit connection to all residents for seven years, as well as free gigabit service to 25 public institutions such as schools and recreational centers.

Now, according to an article in the Salt Lake Tribune, Provo has revealed that they will need to pay additional funds to complete the deal.

Unlike in Kansas City and Austin, where Google will build a fiber optic network from the ground up, Google will utilize Provo’s existing municipal network for the project. However, the construction company that initially installed the fiber optic cables underground in Provo did not keep accurate records of where they buried them, leaving the city unsure of the exact location of their fiber infrastructure. Also, due to overwhelming financial costs a few years back, Provo sold its fiber network to Broadweave in 2008, and did not acquire the network back until 2011. As a result, fiber may have been relocated during this time without the city’s knowledge or approval.

Therefore, as a requirement of Google, Provo must pay $500,000 to a civil engineering firm to find fiber and determine exactly where all the fiber optic cables are buried. Hence, Provo will spend the money now to create a fiber map of their city’s current infrastructure. In addition to the cost of creating a fiber map, Provo will also need to pay roughly $722,000 for equipment in order to maintain their existing municipal network for the government operations, such as traffic lights and police services, that need to use the network on a continual basis.

GeoTel Communications is America’s leading provider of telecommunications infrastructure data in a GIS and web-based solutions. If you are interested in obtaining fiber maps, fiber network maps, or other fiber GIS products for your city or metro area, contact GeoTel Communications at (800) 277-2172.

Valerie Stephen