Fast, affordable Internet access for all.
City and School District Team Up for Fiber in Royal Oak, Michigan
The City of Royal Oak, Michigan, a Detroit suburb and home to 57,000 residents, just announced it will be partnering with the school district to build a fiber optic network. According to the Royal Oak Patch, the cost is estimated at $400,000 and will link together eight city facilities and nine school buildings. According to the article:
“We are spending money now to save money long term,” said Manager of Information Systems Scott Newman. “The new network will be much quicker, more reliable, have increased capacity, and cost the City less to operate.”
The cost of the project is being split between the City and the School District. The School District will own and operate the network, and the City will have dedicated fiber for its share of the network’s capacity. Construction is scheduled to begin this summer, and is planned to be completed this fall.
Update: We contacted Shawn Lewis-Larkin, Superintendent at Royal Oak Schools, for more detail on the project. He replied via email:
We obtained a price from a vendor for meeting the needs we have without constructing our own fiber network. For 60 months the cost was going to be $775,656
Our 5 Year Cost to build and operate our cooperative network with the City will be $205,192.
Savings for Royal Oak Schools: $570,463 Over 60 Months or yearly savings of $114,092
We are still amazed when public schools report such incredible savings, even though we encounter these savings on a regular basis.
In early August, the city of Holland, Michigan (pop. 33,000) voted to fund the construction of a citywide, open access fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) network. It’s the culmination of almost a decade of consideration, education, planning, and success, and builds on decades of work by the Holland Board of Public Works (HBPW) and city officials to build and maintain resilient essential infrastructure for its citizens. It also signals the work the community has done to listen to local residents, community anchor institutions, and the business owners in pushing for an investment that will benefit every premises equally and ensure fast, affordable Internet access is universally available for decades down the road.
In the 1980s, Rancho Cucamonga proclaimed itself “The City with a Plan.” Back then, the plan was to remake this once rural enclave known for its vineyards into more than just one of the many sunny suburbs of Los Angeles. That forward-looking spirit was revived again 30 years later as city leaders looked to cultivate a digital vineyard with the creation of a “Fiber Optic Master Plan” – a six-year $13 million investment plan that targets the city’s new development. Today, the city along the famed Route 66 owns and operates Rancho Cucamonga Municipal Broadband in partnership with Onward, a local private Internet service provider.