Online Poll for Residents and Business Owners Gauges Support for a Municipally-Owned, Town-Wide Fiber Broadband Network
Plainville, CT – October 12, 2021… The Town of Plainville has launched an online broadband interest survey for residents and business owners. The purpose of the poll is to gauge public support for building a municipally-owned fiber-to-the-home (FTTX) broadband network that would offer connections to all town residents and businesses. Participants can access the survey at plainvillect.com/broadband or by going to the Resource Center on the town website and clicking the Broadband Interest Survey button. The survey will be live until June 1, 2022.
Plainville is currently working to deploy a municipal fiber network connecting town offices, wastewater treatment facilities, emergency services, and educational institutions in all four corners of the town with the town center. This state-of-the-art fiber infrastructure, including 12.5 miles of aerial cabling and three underground spans running beneath major highways, is being built in partnership with Sertex Broadband Solutions.
Installation of the municipal network opens the door for Plainville to efficiently build out a town-owned FTTX network. It is envisioned to provide high-speed, affordable, and reliable internet access for everyone in the community, regardless of geographic location or socioeconomic status. Unlike fiber internet services from private companies, a municipally-owned network would ensure high-speed broadband connections for all residents and offer more bandwidth at lower prices. In addition, the town would control end-user costs, service, and operational concerns.
Financial projections for a municipal FTTX network in Plainville estimate infrastructure deployment costs at $13.9 million, including installing fiber drops to all homes and businesses regardless of whether they subscribe for service. Under the proposed budget scenario, the municipal network will pay for itself, with 40 percent of the community subscribing to broadband service. Federal grant funding is not included in these projections, which could substantially offset capital costs further.
Monthly subscription fees for 1G, symmetrical upload/download service, including internet, phone, operations and maintenance, and capital recovery, are expected to be less than $90 per month per household. Charges for comparable service from current providers are about double that amount.
“With a town-owned broadband network, residents would pay much lower fees for much better internet service combined with phone services,” according to Plainville Town Manager Robert Lee. “Town-wide broadband internet access has so many advantages. Our residents and businesses would save money and have control over their network. It could reduce costs and improve quality of life for current residents, increase property values, and help us compete as a community for new businesses and residents.”
Lee encourages all residents and business owners to take the survey by visiting the town’s homepage and entering their address in the survey widget. By confirming their address, individuals gain access to the survey where they can provide information about their satisfaction with current internet services and their support for a publicly-owned fiber broadband network.