Fairlawn, Ohio, a quaint little city in Northern Ohio, it is about to get a big Gig – lightning fast Internet speeds of up to one Gigabit (1000 Megabits) per second (Gbps) – for $75 a month. The city has considered the prospect of such a network since last year, and now the community is moving forward.
On April 4th, Fairlawn City Council unanimously approved several ordinances to build a Fiber-to-the-Home network (FTTH) called “FairlawnGig.” For financing, the network will use revenue bonds in an agreement with the Development Finance Authority of Summit County.
A New FTTH Muni
In November 2015, Fairlawn hired a consultant and envisioned a public-private partnership for the FTTH plan of FairlawnGig. Now, however, these ordinances ensure that the $10 million network that will begin construction in May 2016 will in fact be a municipal network. The ordinances enable the city to enter into a contract with a firm to design and construct the network in the way that best meets the community’s needs.
Currently, the prices are established as:
- Residential 1 Gbps – $75
- Residential 100 Mbps - $55
- Residential 30 Mbps - $30
All speeds will be symmetrical, so upload and download speeds are equally fast. The network will also offer phone service for an extra $25 a month. Businesses have similar speeds for prices between $90 and $500.
FairlawnGig will serve not only the 7,500 residents of Fairlawn, but it will also provide connectivity to the Akron-Fairlawn-Bath Joint Economic Development District. Ohio communities use these sort of districts to share infrastructure improvement projects.
From Vision to Reality
After thanking the City Council for passing the ordinances that have enabled the FTTH project, Fairlawn Mayor William J. Roth, Jr. further reiterated the purpose of the network:
“Our vision to make world-class, high-speed Internet services available to the residents and businesses of Fairlawn is...