Municipal Broadband

Municipal broadband networks take a variety of forms in communities across the United States, but all such networks have basic building blocks in common. For one, they provide broadband, rather than dial-up, service. The Federal Communication Commission (FCC) defines broadband as continuously connected Internet service with 25 Mbps (megabits per second) download speeds and 3 Mbps upload speeds. Additionally, municipal networks are created by a municipal government rather than a private, for-profit company. This can be put into practice in different ways depending on local needs and capacities. In some cases, local governments invest in intermediate networks, and then offer access to private sector partners through a competitive process. In others, such as Chattanooga, Tennessee’s 1 gigabit per second system, municipalities directly offer service to ...

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