WHAT: Join Mayor John Hamilton and representatives from Hoosier Fiber Networks and GigabitNow in the South Griffy neighborhood (https://bton.in/4mU-Y) for exciting updates on the high-speed fiber project. Construction of the new city-wide network first began in the South Griffy neighborhood in late 2022. GigabitNow will soon begin offering service to homes physically connected to the network and continue as construction progresses throughout the city.
The City of Bloomington and Hoosier Fiber Network’s groundbreaking digital equity program, one of the most innovative broadband public-private collaborations in the country, will help low-income and digitally-disadvantaged households access top-quality internet services. Eligible low-income residents may qualify for the Affordable Connectivity Plan (ACP) to receive at least a symmetrical 250 megabits per second (Mbps) plan at reduced -- or no cost to the user if ACP is applied. The City and Hoosier Fiber Networks will together provide the “drop” connection to qualifying households.
WHO: Remarks from Mayor John Hamilton, Bloomington Housing Authority Administrator Leon Gordon, Hoosier Fiber Networks CEO Clint Wiley, and GigabitNow CEO/CTO Stephen Milton will address network progress, digital equity, and next steps.
WHEN: Tuesday, April 4, 2023, from 2–3 p.m.
WHERE: City Council Chambers at City Hall, 401 N Morton St.
BACKGROUND: Since 2016, the Hamilton administration has prioritized establishing a community-wide high-speed fiber network to provide broad and equitable access to this essential 21st-century technology. The primary goals have been broad community coverage, a voice at the table for the City, a financially feasible business model, open access and net neutrality, and a commitment to digital equity.
After several explorations of prospective partnerships and nearly a year of discussions and site visits, the City signed a Master Development Agreement with Meridiam. Since Hoosier Fiber Networks announced its plans in May 2022 and its subsequent launch in October 2022 to bring high-speed internet access to all of Bloomington, the City of Bloomington and Hoosier Fiber Networks have prepared to enter the operations phase of this transformational project.
Meridiam announced on September 13 its partnership with GigabitNow as the primary ISP (Internet Service Provider) under the Hoosier Fiber Networks agreement with the City (https://bton.in/0lATD).
Under the Hoosier Fiber Networks agreement with the City, GigabitNow is the exclusive ISP for at least a five-year term. After the exclusivity period ends, the network may become a full open-access network, open to other ISPs, including local providers, for the lifetime of the network.
Hoosier Fiber Networks is based in Bloomington and plans to grow here as its footprint expands within the state. Columbus, Shelbyville, and Bartholomew County have Hoosier Fiber Networks projects underway and are moving forward following Bloomington’s lead.
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