FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Carrie Rathbun Hawks, APR
30 November 2017 517-896-4763
Owosso becoming “gig city” with new fiber technology
Owosso – The introduction of high-speed fiber infrastructure in Owosso that allows for speeds beyond 1000M – or 1G (one “gigabit”)—means Owosso is now considered a “gig city,” putting a small town on par with numerous other large cities around the country and increasing property values, attracting new businesses and adding one more incentive to keep younger entrepreneurs and workers in town.
DayStarr Communications started building a fiber optic network in Owosso on its own – unlike most other gig networks – more than three years ago. Construction continues on a neighborhood-by-neighborhood basis, with hopes of having the entire city finished within another two to three years. More than 2,000 homes already have access. Because of the cost of building fiber, it is unusual for companies the size of DayStarr to tackle this kind of project without loans, federal grants, etc., according to DayStarr President Collin Rose.
“The reason 1G Internet is not widely available today is because internet providers have to place new fiber optic lines on poles or underground as existing copper infrastructure that has powered the telephone and cable companies for years just isn’t sufficient. Building all new infrastructure is very expensive. We’ve received great cooperation from our local municipalities, but the installation process is time consuming. 1G is still a fairly new option, but demand is increasing every day,” Rose explains.
“The 250M our internet customers start with is fast enough for many users today, but we know the demand for speed is only going to increase. All of our existing infrastructure has been upgraded to support 1G, and the fiber optic infrastructure we are placing today will support the demands of the future, like 10G.”
The National League of Cities defines a gigabit city as one where residents and businesses have access to internet connections operating at ultra-robust speeds up to one gigabit per second, or greater in some places. Other gig cities include Chattanooga, Tenn., Seattle, Wash., Kansas City, Missouri and Austin, Tex.
“Owosso becoming a gig city is unique and valuable because of our small size,” explains Justin Horvath, CEO of the Shiawassee Economic Development Partnership. “Compared to places like Chattanooga and Austin, no one expects to find it here, and they certainly don’t expect it to have been built by a smaller local company like DayStarr. This kind of technology opens the door for a much longer list of companies to do business here, which translates into jobs and revenues that benefit our businesses and governmental units. It’s a big deal these days. Businesses look at things like technology infrastructure when deciding where to locate.”