RealTime IT News

FCC Launches Broadband Database

The Federal Communications Commission, in partnership with state regulators Tuesday introduced a Web site to serve as a national clearinghouse for local communities to share news and information about their broadband deployment projects.

The Web-based survey will gather information about broadband deployment projects nationwide, which will be available in the form of a searchable database on the Web site.

The joint federal-state Web project is designed to facilitate the exchange of information and the development of local "best practices" so that communities can build upon the lessons learned by others in deploying broadband services.

The Web survey project is the result of the Federal-State Joint Conference on Advanced Telecommunications Services to ensure that advanced services are deployed as rapidly as possible to all Americans. The FCC and state regulators are expecting many local communities and municipalities, private industry, educational institutions, and others, to share their success stories on the Web site.

FCC Chairman Kennard extended an invitation to all interested parties to join in this new venture.

"We are asking every community that is finding creative ways to provide high speed Internet access to share their experience through this web site," Kennard said. "The resource we are launching today will give communities across the country a chance to share their strategies for success, and inspire others to follow in their footsteps."

G. Nannette Thompson, Regulatory Commission of Alaska chairperson, said the Joint Conference was impressed by the inspiration, creativity and determination of communities in making high speed Internet access a reality.

"Sharing a vision of advanced telecommunications services for all Americans, we are garnering these success stories on our interactive web site," Thompson said. "In doing so, we hope to pass the torch to other communities, service providers and government officials concerned about getting adequate services in rural, inner-city and other underserved areas."

The Joint Conference recently completed a series of field hearings across the country. The database will include current efforts from the Montana Terrace Smart Home Community in Washington, D.C., to transform a public housing project into a revitalized mixed-income community with state-of-the-art broadband connections to the Internet.

Other broadband deployment efforts included in the database are from projects underway in Orange City and Hawarden, Iowa, the Forks in Washington State, the communities of Sitka, Kake, Kotzebue and Noatak in Alaska, and the Berkshires and on Cape Cod, Massachusetts.

The survey and database are hosted and maintained by the National Regulatory Research Institute at Ohio State, the official research arm of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners.