Over the past several years, Boulder has worked methodically to research how they want to move forward with a publicly owned network. The city has determined that the first step will be deploying a fiber optic backbone, to be completed by 2022. In order to help interested vendors learn more about the project prior to issuing the Request for Proposals (RFP), the city will hold a webinar on August 29th at 9 a.m. MDT.
As described by the city:
Hosted by the City of Boulder’s Chief Innovation and Technology Officer, Julia Richman, the webinar will outline the initiative’s background and progress to date. In addition, the city will also cover the high-level specifications and expectations for construction services, while also providing an expected solicitation timeline.
Boulder is building the first step of a world-class community telecommunications infrastructure for the 21st Century and beyond. Broadband connectivity is a critical infrastructure service for quality of modern life, as is the case with roads, water, sewer and electricity.
The webinar will take place via teleconference and if time allows, the city will open the floor for a brief Question & Answer period.
Ready to Build
Earlier this month, the Boulder City Council voted to issue certificates of participation in the amount of $20 million to finance backbone construction. Certificates will be sold in September.
The 65-mile backbone will take about two years to complete and city leaders hope to wrap up preliminary contracts in order to begin construction in December. While they hope to finish this phase of the project by early 2022, Boulder officials acknowledge that this is a “high-level” schedule and subject to change.
In a 2018 survey, 90 percent of respondents supported the concept of purchasing Internet access from the city. The same survey also revealed that between four and seven percent of households did not connect to the Internet because it was either not available or too expensive. The city’s plan includes an effort to reach low-income households with fast, affordable, reliable connectivity.
Read more about Boulder’s plan and progress at the city’s website.
Vendors interested in signing up for the August 29th webinar can register here.