New York

New York's plan for statewide broadband takes shape

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is making a strong push to ensure that every New Yorker will have access to high-speed broadband service by 2018 with the release of a request for information to help finalize guidelines for the New NY Broadband Program.

According to the governor’s office, the Sept. 24 announcement marks a key step in shaping the program’s structure and guidelines.

“High speed Internet access has become an essential ingredient of any strong economy,” Cuomo said during the announcement. “With this action, we are engaging providers, municipal leaders and other stakeholders to help ensure the New NY Broadband Program leverages the state’s investment in the best way and fulfills its goal of providing access to high speed Internet ... in every corner of this state.”

While most of New York City has access to high-speed Internet, broadband elsewhere in the state is inconsistent. A map detailing the vast number of areas without high-speed broadband access can be viewed here

According to the RFI, the state is looking for the following:

  • Broadband access at speeds of at least 100 Mbps in most places, and 25 Mbps in the most remote and underserved parts of the state.
  • Public-private partnerships that include private sector co-investment.
  • Regional, ground-up deployment planning with the help of New York State’s 10 Regional Economic Development Councils.
  • Leveraging of state-owned fiber and other assets.
  • Delivery of high-speed Internet access to public libraries and educational opportunity centers, in addition to underserved areas of the state.
  • Promotion of affordable broadband access to both commercial and residential users.

Responses to the RFI are due by Oct. 30. The request can be downloaded here and responses can be emailed here.

About the Author

Derek Major is a former reporter for GCN.

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