Community Controlled Bright Fiber Networks

by John Slade | Apr 02, 2013
| 1 Comment

Summary:

Information is necessary in a democracy and access to information is an important issue. The infrastructure that brings us information will increasingly be networks of fiber optic cable.

To ensure that all communities have equitable access to information,communities must have control over that infrastructure. Cooperatives, like rural electrical cooperatives; municipal models like Chattanooga; or other nonprofit structures are all models that can provide community control.

A bright fiber network is also a great investment in infrastructure. Companies with a great high-speed, reliable, source of broadband can come from all over, if they are sure to have access to their customers. Internet startups and anyone who relies on digital delivery will be a powerful economic engine.

A full build-out of a St. Paul bright fiber network would cost a lot more than one million dollars. Estimates range from 60 to 200 million. But one million dollars, spent right, can leverage the resources necessary to bring us much further to that goal.

Imagine the city of Saint Paul with a glowing loop running through it. And on this loop are other smaller loops. These are local loops.

This kind of buildout will move us towards a citywide bright fiber optic network.

The Brightstar Coalition proposal is for a central body which is responsible for advocacy for public and private funding, as well as for the defense of the community controlled model.

There will also be seed funding for three development pilots, to see if local loops can be built with some level of financial sustainability. The three neighborhoods would be in Lowertown (high-density, mixed income), Frogtown-Rondo (medium density, low income and people of color), and Union Park/Mac-Groveland (medium to low density, higher income.)

The initial grant will also be used to leverage more resources. Quality development professionals can double the grant, allowing for three years of funding.

About You

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About You

First Name

John

Last Name

Slade

City

County

Country

United States

Website (if you have one)

Names of others who helped contribute to my idea

Christopher Mitchell, Jim Ivey

How did you hear about the Forever Saint Paul Challenge?

About Your Organization (if applicable)

Organization Name (if applicable)

Brightstar Coalition

Organization Website

Organization Phone

Organization Address

City

Organization Country

United States

Your idea

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Title of your idea

Community Controlled Bright Fiber Networks

Give us the highlights of your idea for making Saint Paul great (2,000 characters maximum or approx. 250 words)

Information is necessary in a democracy and access to information is an important issue. The infrastructure that brings us information will increasingly be networks of fiber optic cable.
To ensure that all communities have equitable access to information,communities must have control over that infrastructure. Cooperatives, like rural electrical cooperatives; municipal models like Chattanooga; or other nonprofit structures are all models that can provide community control.
A bright fiber network is also a great investment in infrastructure. Companies with a great high-speed, reliable, source of broadband can come from all over, if they are sure to have access to their customers. Internet startups and anyone who relies on digital delivery will be a powerful economic engine.
A full build-out of a St. Paul bright fiber network would cost a lot more than one million dollars. Estimates range from 60 to 200 million. But one million dollars, spent right, can leverage the resources necessary to bring us much further to that goal.
Imagine the city of Saint Paul with a glowing loop running through it. And on this loop are other smaller loops. These are local loops.
This kind of buildout will move us towards a citywide bright fiber optic network.
The Brightstar Coalition proposal is for a central body which is responsible for advocacy for public and private funding, as well as for the defense of the community controlled model.
There will also be seed funding for three development pilots, to see if local loops can be built with some level of financial sustainability. The three neighborhoods would be in Lowertown (high-density, mixed income), Frogtown-Rondo (medium density, low income and people of color), and Union Park/Mac-Groveland (medium to low density, higher income.)
The initial grant will also be used to leverage more resources. Quality development professionals can double the grant, allowing for three years of funding.

Website address (if applicable)

Innovation

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What makes your idea different or unexpected? (4000 characters maximum or approx. 500 words)

American cooperatives have enjoyed several waves of success. There comes a time when the extreme individualist tendency burns out and more collective models come forward. We are in the beginning of one of those waves.

We are marrying public infrastructure development with social justice, building towards an equitable world. We also support organized workforces. We are working for a nation where we have a democracy that is healthy enough that people feel they can trust their government. We know Saint Paul can put some smart money and thought into stepping up for the next generation of business growth.

Three different neighborhoods will require three different approaches. Funding will be different. Structures will be different. This plan hatches ideas like the Idea Open does.

Impact

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This Entry is about (Issues)

How will your idea make a difference in Saint Paul? (4000 characters maximum or approx. 500 words)

Companies have relocated to Chattanooga because they have rock-solid, cheap internet capacity. Saint Paul has an education sector that can benefit from this. Think about what the city would be like if water to your house was as unreliable and difficult as internet services are now!

Building equity into the project from the beginning brings the city together. Building these local bright fiber loops will strengthen the neighborhoods that have them (and make other neighborhoods hungry for their loops!) Our testing will determine which structures work best in the marketplace.

Sustainability

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Why do you think people will recognize or remember your idea after it comes to life? How might it inspire others to do something similar in their community? (4000 characters maximum or approx. 500 words)

The cooperatives built in waves. They were a movement. There is a movement already building in this country - from local food to Occupy - that this proposal supports. This will show other local areas how to build and build right for their futures.

jandayangacho2013 jandayangacho2013 said: Fiber networks is faster compared to the ordinary ones. - Paul Kadri about this Competition Entry. - 2585 days ago read more >

John Slade updated this Competition Entry. - 2852 days ago

John Slade submitted this idea. - 2852 days ago