Broadband Initiative

Fiber Optic Cable

Internet access is the infrastructure challenge of the early 21st century. The internet, and access to the information and services it provides, is responsible for economic growth, job creation, education, and a better quality of life. But, the internet only creates value for those who have affordable access and the digital literacy skills to use that access effectively. The City must continue to explore all options that would increase the availability of competitive, affordable gigabit broadband internet access.

Mayor Murray’s Strategy

  • Reduce regulatory barriers: Cities are competing with one another to attract high-speed broadband opportunities. To make Seattle more welcoming to these opportunities, we must look at increasing access to city infrastructure and simplifying our permitting processes. Revisions to the SDOT Director’s Rule 2-2009 are a critical first step in reducing regulatory barriers. However, other regulations should also be reviewed.
  • Explore public/private partnerships: We should investigate ways to engage experienced commercial internet service providers while we look to provide opportunities for improved access and increased competition. The City can potentially leverage existing resources, such as its fiber optic network, to provide service.
  • Explore municipal broadband: While pursuing other options, the City should determine the feasibility of a city-operated fiber-to-the-premise municipal broadband solution that could bring high-speed access to Seattle households.

Broadband plan already yielding results

Mayor Murray recently announced that, as part of his three-point plan for more and better broadband service in the Seattle, he will send legislation to City Council that will bring more competition to the marketplace and more access to service – especially in neighborhoods that are currently underserved.

Murray said his legislation will change a regulatory barrier – the SDOT “director’s rule” – that has prevented companies from investing in their own high-speed fiber networks within the city. CenturyLink earlier today announced that this change will allow it to bring one-gigabit, fiber-to-the-premises internet access to tens of thousands of single-family Seattle homes in Beacon Hill, Central District, Ballard, and West Seattle by the end of 2015.

“So much of our recent economic growth has been due to the success of high tech companies and start-ups that have chosen to make Seattle home,” said Murray. “Yet not all Seattleites are benefiting from our technology boom, and we know that some neighborhoods today lack adequate, competitive choices for broadband internet access. CenturyLink’s announcement to bring fiber internet access to tens of thousands of homes is an important first step in my broadband strategy, but there is more we can do as city to bring equal and affordable access to all.” Read more…

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62 comments
robtfree
robtfree

ok..Mayor..lead the way into the future and get all our neighborhoods wired up!..smell the fed rules coming...and Moderator...stop double talking around this access issue...! ..just reiterating the known information is not a strategy.


TweetMrBaker
TweetMrBaker

Oh ya, I totally get that. On the north end families have just shifted north to Shoreline. Seattle should just be embarrassed by that alone.

But still, the amount of poor folks living in even the Broadview neighborhood is quite large. Greenwood Ave North is lined with two and three story apartments. Nothing like SLU. It's nurses and bus drivers.

The constraining of jobs and infrastructure investment to downtown has done a great disservice to outlying neighborhoods over the years.

robtfree
robtfree

hi..in seattle 5 years or 50years ..depending where you lived most of that time, that you get the perspective im sharing. poor people especially of color do not or cant find housing in seattle..so over the years...ive watched and i've have been told by many of my friends ..they  moved out to kent, renton, des moines, etc..where the warehouse HUD apartment complexes are built. and they truely lack good isp out there. i lived in  High point 5 years, holly park one year and the rest on beacon hill...i watched the tech boom in Seattle and the city government bypass these neighborhoods...a lot of lip serve and PC talk...but it is not realized at the neighbor hood level.

Marc Pease
Marc Pease

Public Private cooperation / partnerships for use of in-place dark fiber connections and bandwidth already exist , just look at the contractual agreements with King County's I-Net, the State's networks using both Comcast and CenturyLink. Don't let Verizon and their VIOS product go unnoticed either for wireless to landline connectivity in the public Rights of Ways either. A mapping of where facilities are currently , connections already in existence to local government facilities, telecom provider hubs and dark strands that are open for negotiation need to be part of the evaluation to optimize broadband development for the city of Seattle. 

robtfree
robtfree

where are you from? have you lived in seattle long? or which part?...ive been here 40years..had 7 kids on lunch program..etc...and we've been poor most of that time...so i dont know about conflating etc...just what i know...there are less original poor folks now ..most that i know  have had to move 20 miles each direction out of Seattle. they commute into town to do slave jobs...there are new white privileged people, with student loans..also poor..and lots of homeless...who are also poor...they go un noticed..except when youre asked for spare change.

- See more at: http://murray.seattle.gov/broadband/?hubRefSrc=email#lf_comment=212115357

Marc Pease
Marc Pease

In a review of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act/ARRA of 2009, the Urban Area Security Initiative / UASI was established through a grant supporting local emergency operations, emergency preparedness and real time multiple agency connectivity during emergencies. Researching the ARRA and Sec.6001 of the Broadband Technology Opportunities Program/BTOP initiatives demonstrated through UASI grant funding and deployment of broadband provide connectivity and interoperability with state networking. Seattle, in a Communications Interoperability Proposal using UASI grant funding outlined distinct and specific urban focused technology initiatives including video conferencing, two-way radio, data communications, secure telephone,public outreach and education. King and Pierce counties, taking the lead, connected facilities, tied into the state networks and regional communication networking. Comcast renewal throughout the region, CenturyLink's current state broadband connectivity to educational facilities across the state and into many local government facilities already point to regional cooperation and effective cost saving measures using institutional connectivity all authorized via local franchise authority, and public utility broadband authority pursuant to the 1996 Telecommunication Act. I feel it is time to look at all the potential opportunities of the existing contractual agreements via King County's I-Net ( Comcast), the State's three broadband networks (CenturyLink) and look at these broadband advantages. 

robtfree
robtfree

In the late 1970s, i was living in Edmonton Alberta. the city eliminated all telephone/power-lines and buried them underground. many complained at the cost. but over the years..no power outages from storms and the beauty of the city is greatly enhanced. Same can be said of extending or mandating the big ISP to finish the "last mile". As to the poor neighborhoods..where the hell are they? most poor people have had to relocate from the loss of homes from the Holly park..High Point and Rainer vista  garden communities. as "mixed" income houses were constructed to accommodate ..the poor middle class needs for housing. the notion of mixing poor folk with middle income would some how through osmosis elevate poor people into middle class lifestyles. so very few places of poverty in Seattle, as the housing strategy of the city is to "move them out!" ie Yesler Terrace re construct. So hesitation of IPS to make lines into the "poor " sections is a weak argument. its part of the IPS strategy to choke the lines through under capacity, unless you pay more for unchoked access.


Marc Pease
Marc Pease

Consideration of partnerships with King County and its own Institutional Network and the State's regional Intergovernmental (cities and counties) / K-20 (educational) networks for optimum connectivity should be part of any broadband plan moving forward. Connections currently tie the UW, King County offices, emergency services in King and Pierce Counties, Tacoma Power's Click Network, and health facilities regionally together. CenturyLink connects much of the state networking under the overview of the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission so this partnership optimization already exists. I feel that municipal broadband should encompass a regional approach for enhancing competition, connectivity, and budget/ cost efficiencies.    

Marc Pease
Marc Pease

The muni broadband plan , I think , should consider partnerships with King County and their own Institutional Network now operational and the State's networks of Intergovernmental ( city-county) and K-20 ( educational) since there are currently connectivity with UW, King County offices, regional emergency services in King and Pierce Counties, a connection to Tacoma Power's Click Network and their own Institutional Network along with telecommunication hubs/central network locations. CenturyLink connects many of the State's networks and these current connections should be considered and leveraged for optimum resources pursuing a broadband plan as well. 

GarrettCobarr
GarrettCobarr

First, Mayor Murray, I find it confusing and somewhat manipulative to ask the public this question, "Do you support high speed internet in Seattle? Speak out now!" then ask, "If you support increasing high speed internet and support Mayor Ed Murray’s plan to change the SDOT Director’s Rule we need to hear from you now."


Why can't I and the rest of the public support high speed Internet and not support the amendment of the "Director's Rule?" At every chance you and your staff get, you make the possibility of broadband and the end of the "Director's Rule" sound synonymous. They are not.


It highly likely that the Rule does not need to be amended, but to what? You fail to say what that will look like. The Director's Rule was created to allow individual home owners a say in what happens in front of their home, the single largest investment in their lifetimes. I would agree that the amount of approval by local home owners may be to much.


Are you willing to take the unpopular political position and tell me that I have no rights as to what takes place in front of my home? That I must sacrifice them to the giant, faceless telecom and cable company monopolies and where, to their profit driven whims, they wish to place their metal cabinets and the concrete foundations that they require? That's intolerable. These cabinets are not only unsightly, they would likely limit access to someone's home and reduce the property's value.


This would not be true in the case of large apartment buildings or commercial structures but the scale is very different with single family dwellings. If you want to have an honest debate that allows people to make a clear decision, you need to tell Seattle voters what your amended Director's Rule would look like and what our rights will be on the placement of telecom and cable company equipment.


Second, at every public meeting I attended on the Comcast re-franchise, held a few months ago, what I heard overwhelmingly, everything else being a distant second, was a full throated desire for a municipal broadband. The loathing of high speed Internet, large monopoly solutions was unmistakable. To sign another 10 year contract with same problematic players would be huge mistake and stick us in the backseat once again. 5 years is a long time in technology, 10 years is a life time.


I find it amazing that we can muscle the money for a ridiculous tunnel under the waterfront, or another sports stadium, and yet we cannot get it up to put in broadband throughout Seattle. This does not make us a World Class city.


robtfree
robtfree

in the 1990s the nation was cris crossed many times over with fiber optics..as many companies sought to set up . start up and compete for ISP.
wireless, broadband cable, fiber optics where the three top technologies competing for dominance.
the top  dozen or so  internet providers,ie.. att, comcast, etc ..overwhelmed the rest in the big shake out that demolished the rest.
so the nation has 10s of thousands of miles of un used buried fiber optic lines..that could be tapped into to provide affordable and competitive rates to all.

Naes
Naes

I see @Office of Mayor Ed Murray responding to lots of other comments but so far steering pretty clear of the loud chorus of people calling for Municipal Broadband. There has been minimal comments, except for one short one: "The issue you raise here is one of the more compelling reasons the Mayor is asking his CTO to explore a municipal broadband option if public/private partnerships don't fulfill the city's needs."


I would like to hear more from Mayor Murray as to why Municipal Broadband is not the first option being evaluated instead of taking second place to public/private partnerships.

Lets Be Honest Here
Lets Be Honest Here

http://cascadelink.com/

Best company I've ever worked with. Their support is amazing and I can't give them enough praise. 

Plus at the $40 price point you're at with Comcast, you're probably at 16 Mbps Down / 3 Mbps Up. If you have a multi-person household that data cap will be destroyed by mid-month easily.

robtfree
robtfree

SO WHO IS YOUR VENDOR? FOR $79....I PAY COMCAST $40 WITH 250 GB CAP....IM PAYING COMCAST TO allow  sites like , Google, Facebook,etc...to send me high data rich ads and commercials . these ads, video, commercials eat up my data cap.when i visit any of these sites..up pop data rich info. the city state and feds need to mandate controls to filter and stop the download of this data.


Lets Be Honest Here
Lets Be Honest Here

I currently pay $79.99 a month for 1000 Mbps Down / 1000 Mbps Up, with NO data caps, NO taxes and NO random fees. Comcast's highest speeds is 100 Mbps Down / 20 Mbps Up with the potential of their old data caps coming back for the VERY competitive price of $199.99 (plus lots of random taxes and fees) a month

Everyone in Seattle should be given this affordable opportunity.

Wallingnerd_IT
Wallingnerd_IT

Seattle City Light / Municipal Broadband.  My voting and campaign assistance to whoever will bring it.


Very excited about that aspect of this discussion, thanks Mayor!

Marc Pease
Marc Pease

Yesterdays Seattle Times ( Brier Dudley - Business - A7) has a good discussion / interview with Oregon Senator Ron Wyden who supports reclassification of broadband services into an essential utility. This direction associated with the current FCC activity, Seattle's leading membership in the national association of NATOA, and broadband activities surrounding Portland, Oregon and other local cable franchise authorities should all be embraced here throughout the Puget Sound region and state of Washington.

robtfree
robtfree

it is in the role of the federal communications commission  to investigate the redlining racist practices of the top internet service providers and the city of Seattle who have allowed such practices here in Seattle.internet can now be realized a basic "utility" for people to function in today's environment so laden  with technology dependence. and as a"utility ", the city must madate vendors with strict requirements of access to all communities and peoples ...and if not the FCC ..the justice department investigate the multi billion dollar internet providers racist relining practices.

SeattleKiwi
SeattleKiwi

I am no socialist.  However I am very happy with the service provided to me and the community over several years by Seattle City Light.  Never had a problem with them, they're always responsive, and their prices are low.  They are answerable to the city council and ultimately to the voters.  


My experience with Comcast is the exact opposite.  They are perhaps the worst company or agency I've ever had the misfortune to be involved with.  CenturyLink is not an option - 1.5Mbps in my neighborhood.   We rely on high speed internet for my wife's VPN for her home business.  


If only Seattle City Light could run high speed internet the way they run the electrical service and provide some competition to Comcast I'd be ecstatic!!  I'm sure most of my fellow Seattleites would switch to SCL in a flash!

TweetMrBaker
TweetMrBaker

Based on a response I received in January, and subsequent action, will the city update the 2009 study to reveal the holes in the corporate effort to build out broadband?

http://www.seattle.gov/broadband/docs/SeattleFTTNBenefits_091109.pdf

It seems to me that the city is going through similar actions as the prior administration did with gigabit only the "success" being that CenturyLink captures profitable neighborhoods, leaving less profitable neighborhoods lacking.

As was indicated in the 2009 study, and plainly obvious, completely covering Seattle in fiber is not going to happen as a result of granting unfettered access to corporations, but as a utility.

Handing over neighborhoods is short sighted.

Guyseattle
Guyseattle

Hopefully CenturyLink will expand the neighborhoods they are going to add fiber to include Capitol Hill so we can have an viable alternative to Comcast.  Currently the only alternative is CenturyLink DSL and that maxes out at 7 mbps in my part of the hill.

robtfree
robtfree

yah...us colored folks living up here on beacon hill for decades, got little or no service from all the providers. complained for decades to the city..not no responses...now that gentrification is forcing many people of color from the hill...we suddenly got concerned politicians about internet service up this ways...

TweetMrBaker
TweetMrBaker

The city will be partnering with a few groups, and not likely going to develop its own information connectivity version of Seattle City Light, but it could, and maybe it should.

Those partnerships end at the edges of government, and governments assistance to commerce, but do not extend to private homes.

From that edge pint on the free market monopoly has worked very hard at cultivating monitary gains but not system upgrades and advancements that extend to every home in Seattle.

The cities 5-year-old study pointed this out. Not much has changed except the passage of time.

NetworkGuy
NetworkGuy

@Marc Pease 

Can you explain in a little more detail? I'm completely unfamiliar with these programs and how the city could take advantage of these programs if they could help provide funding and/or access for municipal broadband!

TweetMrBaker
TweetMrBaker

It is an interesting model. I thought the program ended in 2010.

TweetMrBaker
TweetMrBaker

You should go to the Seattle Public Schools website and see how many kids have free or reduced lunch, and how the city extends that into the summer for kids.

You will be surprised by how many kids are involved.

The households those kids live in are not likely customers of $79 broadband internet.

The digital divide is a real thing. It's been studied to death. Not surprisingly, the duopoly still hasn't closed that gap. It's been a decade.

TweetMrBaker
TweetMrBaker

I hate to say it but, I do not see them participating in metro transit. I'm not sure how much to expect them to participate in this.

We might want to skip to our current situation and partner with municipalities near Seattle that are interested.

NetworkGuy
NetworkGuy

@GarrettCobarr 

Agreed! I think the city has waited a very long time for real broadband. Something none of the incumbents have a true incentive to provide. The city MUST look at municipal broadband as the only way to truly blanket the city and meet one of the things stated by mayor Murray - that there are competitive and affordable options. CenturyLink may compete in some markets in the city, but their recently announced product is NOT affordable. At $152/month *without* any bundled services, that prices a large number of Seattle families right out of the market.


Requiring families to "bundle" phone and/or TV service to get their $79.95/month pricing is not realistic. How many families have eliminated home phones in favor of cell phones? And how many have cancelled TV service and using only over-the-air broadcasts? For these folks, $152/month is hardly affordable!

DavidRobison
DavidRobison

@robtfree That's unfortunately not true of the "last mile"—fiber from the CO (telco neighborhood building) to the home. That's what's really expensive as there's so little economy of scale and why copper and coax (installed by monopolies) make up the vast majority of home connections.

I too would be very happy if SCL did do municipal fiber, but there'd still be a big cost to get fiber to each home.

Office of Mayor Ed Murray
Office of Mayor Ed Murray moderator

Hi @Naes, you raise a great question and it is one the Mayor has addressed a few times. If you look at his three-point broadband strategy, you'll see that exploring the feasibility of municipal broadband service is in his plan.

As @DavidRobison mentioned in his comments, while the city does currently maintain spare fiber capacity, the 'last mile' infrastructure to get connectivity to homes in a city this size is a significant infrastructure build out. In addition to last mile infrastructure, we must also consider costs of establishing and administering the service to ensure the best privacy, security, and customer service possible for our customers, as well as making sure the business model is a sustainable one. These are big conversations to have and can't be solved in short order. For that reason, the Mayor wants to identify short-term solutions as well to ease some of the current frustration.

Our CTO is looking at all possible options now and we hope to be able to share some next steps this fall. Stay tuned for more.

NetworkGuy
NetworkGuy

@Lets Be Honest Here 

Unfortunately, they are not a residential service company. Maybe given some time, they can expand. Isn't this "Condo Internet"?

Naes
Naes

@Wallingnerd_IT Yes, I totally agree! We trust Seattle City Light to provide us electricity; why do we need private companies to provide broadband? Isn't there a bunch of dark fiber sitting around?

NetworkGuy
NetworkGuy

@SeattleKiwi 

I completely agree. I want the city to build a fiber network infrastructure (fttp). If the city wants to run it, I'd be okay with that too. Or open it up for anyone qualified (with city set requirements) to service as an ISP.


Even with CenturyLink's latest announcement, I have the same opinion of them as I do of Comcast. They don't care if the service works or not. I live in an apartment in North Seattle with CenturyLink fiber to the building (then copper to the apartment). They said it was capable of 40Mbps down and 20Mbps up. My experience was nowhere close to that, and EVERY DAY the service would drop to near zero (speed testing was laughable - sometimes it was not even fast enough to run the website). I cancelled and went with Comcast. It's much more consistent, but they are DIFFICULT to deal with when you have problems or billing errors. Good luck to get it resolved. You either fork over or stop your Internet access - neither one is a good option!

GarrettCobarr
GarrettCobarr

@TweetMrBaker Well said. I have this report in my research. I find it interesting that SDOT's Director’s Rule 2-2009 is never mentioned as a blocking factor for high speed fiber buildout. The lack of fiber is, many times.


SDOT is mentioned numerous times as a major benefactor of broadband, as they would be able to greatly improve, and lower cost, of their plans for integrated control over signal systems, drawbridges, etc..

Office of Mayor Ed Murray
Office of Mayor Ed Murray moderator

@robtfree Bringing in Gigabit Squared was a project initiated by the previous administration and was never able to come to fruition due to Gigabit's own lack of funding. This isn't so much a replacement of the Gigabit project as it is our current Mayor's three-point plan for finally getting Seattle wired with high-speed capability.

NetworkGuy
NetworkGuy

@TweetMrBaker 

As I've pointed out before, the city has been down this road before. For more than a decade, the city made the decision to install [dark] fiber and/or conduit every time construction called for road work (e.g. digging) for an eventual city wide network. The problem is that 10 years later, we have a lot of unused fiber in the city, but no plan in place on what to do with it - nor even any plan to discuss how to use it.


For me, I would NOT want to hand this infrastructure over to any city incumbents. We already know how they treat Seattle's residents! Rather, I'd like to see the city make the decision to finally build out our own municipal network. The city could run it (e.g. Seattle City Light) or simply provide the infrastructure to qualified ISPs who would "compete" with each other. One of the benefits would be that city residents would see downward price pressures which benefits our communities and low income groups. But there are a host of other tangible and intangible benefits.

I know there have been numerous reports showing this information, but getting the city to wake up and do something is the hard part.


Come on, mayor Murray - let's get off the pot and make Seattle the technology city that every Seattle administration has claimed it to be!

robtfree
robtfree

@TweetMrBaker  the median income for Seattle is around $86,000. so lunch program includes many whose family have income several times the federal poverty levels..as is allowed. the Seattle school program picks up from full to a reduced cost of a lunch...those numbers reveal a bit more...regardless...look at the stats from a few years ago..either way...there were many in the school program then and now...

Naes
Naes

@Office of Mayor Ed Murray, thanks for the response. However so far all I have heard is talking points and all I have read is bullet points regarding municipal broadband. All of the focus has been on letting private corporations fill the void (and chase only the most profitable service areas). I would like to see much more focus, specific actions, and progress made directly on implementing municipal broadband. The city can find $200 million dollars to "invest" in a sports stadium that gives all the upside of the investment to the private partner, why can't we find money to invest in a municipal broadband solution that would have much greater economic impact to a wide array of businesses?

TweetMrBaker
TweetMrBaker

FTTP, as stated in the 2009 study, isn't very profitable to build out to poor people. It's just not going to happen for all of Seattle. Pretending otherwise is kind of where we are right now.

It doesn't become more attractive to the broader population to have the for-profits cherry-pick part of the population. It just delays rollout to poorer neighborhoods.

Building out municipal fiber would be a competitive advantage for people living and working in Seattle. Nobody I have seen argues against that, and the mayor has staked out a middle ground, but really the opportunity and time for the for profits to do something useful has passed.

We need a proactive plan.

TweetMrBaker
TweetMrBaker

Well, the only government agency that has defended my right to privacy on a broad scale have been the libraries.

Our libraries already run an internet service, with incredibly nice people in every neighborhood.

I sent an email to SPL in 2009 to ask if they would consider running an email service. At least they would not use it as a marketing database to drown me in advertising. But they said no.

I would be thrilled if my SPL home page also had email, I'd dump gmail on its head in a heartbeat.

SCL pulls wire, and SPL manages a very bare bones ISP, some city third party plays referee as the "utility".

NetworkGuy
NetworkGuy

@Office of Mayor Ed Murray @robtfree 

Like others here, I'm somewhat skeptical!

This is a company that has been servicing Seattle's Internet needs for more than a decade. With this announcement, CenturyLink is cherry picking neighborhoods where there are more affluent customers with a corresponding demand and, consequently, higher profits. In the end, CenturyLink may leave other less affluent neighborhoods out. And as the Internet consumers of this "technology" city, we usually won't learn about this situation for years as typically we are strung along for one reason or another. Look at how long Seattle has been investigating how to bring truly high speed access to the city!

Please explain the mayor's "3 point plan"?

robtfree
robtfree

@Office of Mayor Ed Murray @robtfree 

many here in the area request the mayor to ensure the costs of the services  are similar offered by gigabit squared. it offered low income residents fast internet for  a small amount..compared to comcast, centurylink, etc. and up to five years. makes up for no service out here for years.


TweetMrBaker
TweetMrBaker

Are you conflating the federal poverty level vs cost of living in Seattle, or in the Seattle metropolitan area?

Are you saying that there aren't any poor people in Seattle?

NetworkGuy
NetworkGuy

@TweetMrBaker 

So far every mayor we've had continues to do  the SAME THING. Saying they want competitive and affordable broadband to all of Seattle. For more than a decade this has been "in the works". That's why we have so much dark fiber buried around the city.

We need the city to realize that it can be a HUGE plus to build out a city wide fiber network (FTTH/FTTP). Just look to other municipal networks that are successful to understand the benefits. I don't want to see the city WAIT ANOTHER DECADE and then realize nothing's changed! People are drawn to a "wired" community! They want to live where they can get the best access. Aside from Google (and maybe some smaller players), I do NOT trust any of the large ISP players in the market. They talk big and deliver little at a very high price.

toniperez
toniperez

I currently pay $79.99 a month for 1000 Mbps Down / 1000 Mbps Up, with NO data caps, NO taxes and NO random fees. Comcast's highest speeds is 100 Mbps Down / 20 Mbps Up with the potential of their old data caps coming back for the VERY competitive price of $199.99 (plus lots of random taxes and fees) a month http://www.allnewdeals.com/

Office of Mayor Ed Murray
Office of Mayor Ed Murray moderator

@robtfree @Office of Mayor Ed Murray low-cost options for internet access exist now, though are often not marketed as widely as they could be:

http://www.seattle.gov/tech/LowCostInternet

Centurylink will be offering a low-cost high-speed service to the neighborhoods it rolls out its fiber to as a result of this Director's Rule change and we're hopeful that other services will follow.


The issue you raise here is one of the more compelling reasons the Mayor is asking his CTO to explore a municipal broadband option if public/private partnerships don't fulfill the city's needs.

robtfree
robtfree

@TweetMrBaker where are you from? have you lived in seattle long? or which part?...ive been here 40years..had 7 kids on lunch program..etc...and we've been poor most of that time...so i dont know about conflating etc...just what i know...there are less original poor folks now ..most that i know  have had to move 20 miles each direction out of Seattle. they commute into town to do slave jobs...there are new white privileged people, with student loans..also poor..and lots of homeless...who are also poor...they go un noticed..except when youre asked for spare change.


NetworkGuy
NetworkGuy

@Office of Mayor Ed Murray @robtfree 

The problem I see is that Seattle has been "exploring" broadband options for more than 10 years. In that time, little, if any, forward motion has occurred. We continue to hear that the city want to explore public/private partnerships to expand "competition" of broadband in the city. 10 years later, city officials continue saying the same thing. The only piece that's missing, as quoted from a recent Mattmiller article, is the "affordable" portion of the equation.

QUOTE:
Mattmiller said he also welcomes additional providers who want to serve Seattle residents.

“We need to make sure broadband does not become a barrier. And that there are competitive and affordable broadband options,” he said.
END-QUOTE

While it's nice if CenturyLink can bring higher speed broadband to some initial Seattle neighborhoods, their pricing structure leaves a lot to be desired. I would NEVER count a $152/month service plan for gigabit "affordable".

While it's nice to have them, a truly competitive environment should bring prices down. Until such time, these ISPs will price most people out of the market for the truly high speed products.


A city fiber network, owned by the city and contracted out to all ISPs which desire, could rent and service customers anywhere on the city network. This could move us to a "competitive" and "affordable" environment. Seattle, let's rely on past investigations for municipal requirements and move forward with our own broadband network!

TweetMrBaker
TweetMrBaker

Born here, 50 years, thanks for asking.

There are still poor people that live in Seattle. They didn't all move out, and they can't afford to pay Comcast and CenturyLink their profits.

So, they do not have a profit incentive to build into those neighborhoods.

Municipal FTTP / FTTH if done as a utility would be mandated to build out to every place SCL has a power meter.

We already subsidize power to many people, subsidizing fiber to the home for basic VoIP or connectivity might be helpful since services that many people depend on have most items online.