Tuesday, January 25, 2005
FTTH in Morristown, Tennessee
Morristown, Tennessee, population 24,965, is building fiber to the home. According to an article in the Knoxville News Sentinel, the city responded to a doubling of commercial cable TV rates by chartering its municipal utility to build a fiber network. Morristown's first customers will come on line in June, 2005. The build will cost $18,000,000, or $720 per person, or $1400 per home. The article says
It makes sense for community utility companies to get into the cable and Internet business because they're already providing the customer service and network maintenance needed to maintain its utility infrastructure, said Michael Bowers, principal at Icon Broadband Technologies, the engineering firm Morristown hired to do a feasibility study on the project,.Once again, a tip of the linky hat to Jim Baller
"Municipalities that have electric utilities are very much customer-service oriented in the sense that if your power goes out, they're there to repair that kind of thing," he said. "(Broadband) really becomes a utility like they do all the time."
At the rate it now costs for a home to have "basic" cable TV and an Internet connection in Knoxville, TN, those homes in Morristown can pay for its entire network, easily, in less than two years. If a community can "pay in" at current rates to cover the cost of building the network in less than two years, then the rest of their cost should be no more than maintenance and customer service (tech support), right? If the utility is community owned, to any degree at all, rather than owned by Charter or Comcast (large global entertainment conglomerates?), then it stands to reason that a LOT more people can afford it. Yea! for Morristown. And BOO! to the Tennessee legislature, who is attempting to make laws to keep communities and rural utilities from doing this.Post a Comment