Google Fiber targets 34 cities and towns for expansion

Google revealed today that it has its eyes on 34 cities and towns concentrated in the U.S. West and South as possible expansion markets for its 1-Gbps Google Fiber fiber to the home (FTTH) service. Government leaders in each community will have to complete a “fiber ready checklist” that will ease Google’s deployments while the company further studies each market’s suitability.

Google revealed today that it has its eyes on 34 cities and towns concentrated in the U.S. West and South as possible expansion markets for its 1-Gbps Google Fiber fiber to the home (FTTH) service. Government leaders in each community will have to complete a “fiber ready checklist” that will ease Google’s deployments while the company further studies each market’s suitability.

The not so short list of targets includes:

  • Phoenix, Scottsdale, and Tempe, AZ
  • San Jose, Santa Clara, Sunnyvale, Mountain View, and Palo Alto, CA
  • Atlanta, Avondale Estates, Brookhaven, College Park, Decatur, East Point, Hapeville, Sandy Springs, and Smyrna, GA
  • Charlotte, Carrboro, Cary, Chapel Hill, Durham, Garner, Morrisville, and Raleigh, NC
  • Portland, Beaverton, Hillsboro, Gresham, Lake Oswego, and Tigard, OR
  • Nashville-Davidson, TN
  • San Antonio, TX
  • Salt Lake City, UT.

Google says it chose these locations because local leaders have already made high-speed Internet provision a priority. “And they are diverse -- not just geographically, but in the ways they’ll give us opportunities to learn about the wide range of challenges and obstacles that communities might face in trying to build a new fiber network,” Google says on its Google Fiber website.

But city officials still have work to do to entice Google Fiber to come to town. The tasks include ensuring that local conditions meet Google’s requirements by completing a checklist of requirements by May 1 that includes:

  • Ensuring Google can access and lease existing infrastructure
  • Providing accurate information about such in-place resources as utility poles, conduit and existing water, gas and electricity lines
  • Proving it has sufficiently streamlined and efficient construction permitting and approval processes.

In addition, Google will meet with local officials and others to further study each market, including such aspects as topology and housing density, to assess further the attractiveness of the cities and towns on the list.

City leaders in San Antonio have already announced their willingness cooperate. "San Antonians deserve faster Internet speeds and better broadband access," said San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro. "We're working hard to make that happen – and I'm confident that we will accomplish our goal."

"The implications of fiber to the home are widespread and will have a significant impact on the residents of San Antonio," added San Antonio City Manager Sheryl Sculley. "Ultra high-speed Internet is paving the way for the next revolution of Internet-based applications and business models and will enhance our ability to compete on the world stage."

Santa Clara officials believe they're well positioned thanks to the fact that the local electrical utility already operates an FTTH network. “This is an exciting extension of the Silicon Valley Power fiber network our city has been developing for the last 15 years,” asserted Santa Clara Mayor Jamie L. Matthews.

“With a company like Google exploring the options with us, we are optimistic that our built-in fiber capabilities and our experienced SVP Fiber Enterprise professionals will make the transition to a Google Gigabit community a reality for Santa Clara,” said Santa Clara City Manager Julio J. Fuentes

The review process in each community will take several months, Google estimates. The company promises an update on its plans for the 34 target markets by the end of the year.

Google Fiber already operates in Kansas City, KS and Kansas City, MO. It bought the iProvo FTTH network and plans to roll out services in Provo, UT this spring. The company also plans to offer services this year in Austin, TX.

For more information on FTTx equipment and suppliers, visit the Lightwave Buyer’s Guide.

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