Community Network Map

Communities invest in telecommunications networks for a variety of reasons - economic development, improving access to education and health care, price stabilization, etc. They range from massive networks offering a gig to hundreds of thousands in Tennessee to small towns connecting a few local businesses.

This map tracks a variety of ways in which local governments have invested in wired telecommunications networks as well as state laws that discourage such approaches.

Our map includes nearly 400 communities:
  • 89 communities with a publicly owned FTTH network reaching most or all of the community.
  • 74 communities with a publicly owned cable network reaching most or all of the community.
  • Over 180 communities with some publicly owned fiber service available to parts of the community.
  • Over 40 communities in 13 states with a publicly owned network offering at least 1 Gigabit services.

Nineteen states have barriers in place that discourage or prevent local communities from deciding locally if such an investment is a wise decision. We strongly believe these decisions should be made locally, based on needs, capacity, and desire of the community itself.

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Click on the pin of a network to learn more about it or click on a state with barriers (in red) to learn about the limitation. Below the map, you may select what types of information you want to display.

If you want more information about a specific network, check if we have tagged it in a previous post, search our site for it, or check another source of information such as the excellent database maintained by Broadband Properties Magazine.

For general information about community networks, see our Fact Sheets or read about three of the most advanced networks in the nation or an example of incremental public investments to create a network. For a better sense of how big corporations convince states to discourage community networks, see our report on North Carolina: The Empire Lobbies Back.

We continue to expand this map with other forms of publicly owned networks. Still to come are wireless networks, networks serving community anchor institutions, and more. Get updates by signing up for our one-email-per-week list announcing new stories and resources.

Please do let us know if we missed any community networks or if you want to report an error. Stay up to date with information about these networks by following us on Twitter, fanning us on Facebook, and/or tuning into our weekly podcast.

Media Contact: Christopher Mitchell, 612-276-3456 x209

Credit for this map's design should be given to Eric James. The data comes from a combination of sources, notably Broadband Properties Magazine, FTTH Council, Jim Baller, and information collected for years by the Institute for Local Self-Reliance. Thank you to the Ford Foundation for enabling us to maintain this map.

Comments

power to the people!

About a year and a half ago we found ourselves on the market for a house.  At the time we lived in Clayton, NC.

When I found out what the city of Wilson, NC had done since the time I had left working a contract position as a DSL field tech for the local phone company and took another job, we got really excited and decided Wilson was where we would be buying our house.

Since then, we have been extremely pleased with the services provided by Greenlight.  I don't know how many people around Wilson, NC might have occasion to read this, so I'll step back and make this a bit more general.  Because it really should be applicable anywhere else people are trying to put these local municipal broadband networks together.

Folks you should support efforts like this being made in your community.  And if there are not efforts like this being made in your community, if you feel strongly about it, start talking to your friends and neighbors - and more importantly your local elected officials.

There are so many ways this is a "win win" situation.  One, it is possible for municipalities to get very, very good rates from major bandwidth providers such as Level3, etc.   And although your local municipality would have to make a profit to operate, hire local support staff, engineers, etc., service can often be provided at rates that, well, make the "big private companies" shake in their shoes.  It's not that they can't provide competitive rates, it's just that they don't really HAVE to when there is no real competition.  it's easy to make a bunch of people in a "market" believe myths like "oh, c'mon nobody really needs 100 megabit internet service." Or, "regular people don't need a lot of upstream/upload bandwidth.  Only businesses need that."  Or so many other myths -- when there is nobody offering service in that "market" playing by a set of rules that put YOU first rather than their bottom line.

The biggest win is that you can support your local community, and get service and support from local people.  As a customer, and also as a highly-experienced (at least once upon a time) broadband technician who had to deal with the support folks on the phone sometimes too, I can tell you it makes a huge difference to be able to work with local people.  I suppose there might be some places that might consider doing something like this and then outsourcing their support, but I'm guessing that wouldn't be very common.  This seems to be one of the main complaints so many people have with "the big companies".

Anyway, I'll wrap this up but I just wanted to say, folks this is one way that you can definitely make a difference.  Support your local municipal broadband project. 

 

Could a static version of

Could a static version of this map be made available, on this web page? My browser simply shows an error stating that Javascript is required to view the map.

Static Images

Yes, Google Maps does require javascript.  I'm pasting a static image below, but note that the actual map above has information available when clicking on the markers as well as the ability to zoom and pan.  

Static Map of Community Networks

Hawaii

Aloha,

Just wondering if you have come across any data for Hawaii?  I personally only know of proprietary fiber being laid here in Maui, but I believe it was funded through OHA (Office of Hawaiian Affairs) grants.  I also have heard that there are some municipal buildings that have a fiber connection, but don't know the details of that.

Great job on the map guys!

Mahalo,

Randy Mills

Akaku: Maui Community Television

No data

Sorry - I don't recall seeing anything about Hawaii yet.  Check back occasionally though - if we find anything, we'll put it up.  And if you find anyting, be sure to let us know!

Public Fiber

State cable franchises in Hawai'i required that Time Warner provide dedicated fiber to the State. The original franchise documents will show this - for example - Maui County secured fifty locations, including every fire station and school with dark fiber...

When local advocates, including Akaku, pursued the development of community broadband networks using that public fiber asset, the corrupt State regulator at Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs apparently secured side deals and Attorney General opinions to reduce the dedicated fiber network to a service connection ...

It may take some time to dig through the files and follow that trail - but given the corrupt and opaque nature of DCCA under the Cayetano and Lingle Administrations, you may find buried treasure in the dung heap!

 

What does HFC stand for?

What does HFC (on the map legend) stand for?

 

Thanks.

HFC

If you hover over your comment, you'll see a definition from our glossary (not that you could have done that before you posted the comment).  It is a mix of cable and fiber-optics.

Thanks.

I appreciate it. :)