High Speed Broadband Fiber in Downtown Eugene

Fiber optics

The City of Eugene, EWEB, and the Lane Council of Governments have partnered to construct a municipally owned fiber network in downtown Eugene. The fiber network will be owned by EWEB, and private Internet Service Providers (ISPs) will lease the fiber strands and provide service to individual businesses within the service area. Any qualified ISP will be able to lease the fiber—it is an open-access network. Construction is scheduled to occur during 2017 and into 2018.

The three agencies and the Technology Association of Oregon (TAO) have been working together to test the engineering and financial viability of the network and have brought fiber to a handful of buildings in the downtown in a pilot project.

Customers that are in the service area will be able to purchase high-speed internet service for much less than what service providers offer today. For example, firms in the Broadway Commerce Center saw the price of monthly service decline from about $250 for 150-megabit service, to $99 for 1,000-megabit service. More information about the timeline for service availability timeline will be provided as it is confirmed.

The three agencies are working to finalize administrative details to begin construction and identify funding sources. To date, we have secured funding for about half of the project, using Eugene Urban Renewal funds. We are applying for grant funds from the US Economic Development Administration. We will also ask property owners for a connection fee, but we are working out an appropriate amount to charge for the connection

The map shows the planned service area—where the network will be constructed—and the boundaries of the two Urban Renewal districts that can be used to fund construction. map

While this high-speed fiber network is not currently available, construction will begin in 2017. Work is expected to begin in the southeast portion of the service area, south of Broadway and east of Willamette. Phased construction will then move forward in the southwest portion, and then move north of Broadway. The full construction timeline will depend on funding availability.

Urban Renewal: The 2016 Downtown Urban Renewal Plan amendment makes fiber installation within the Downtown District an eligible project for up to $3 million urban renewal funds. Design engineering is underway to identify the final cost. Prior to authorizing urban renewal funds for the project, City Council, acting as the Agency Board, will need to approve the spending through the budget process, which will include a public hearing. Click here for more information on Urban Renewal.

For Details on the Fiber Project Launch Celebration visit here.

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