Kentucky Wired — We Need Your Support

We need the community to support Louisville Metro’s partnership with Kentucky Wired. This project will expand our fiber network by over 400% and will both directly and indirectly improve quality of life in our community. The fiber will be used to improve (and lower the cost of) internet service for residents, support government buildings and services, and reduce the digital divide.

Louisville needs a robust, fiber-optic cable network to stay competitive for economic development opportunities and improve the efficiency and effectiveness of government services.

But, there is a chance this might not happen at all. Here’s how you can help:

1. Call your Metro Council member now and tell them to fund Project #44, the Kentucky Wired Project. The budget isn’t finalized until 6/22, so we have a little over two weeks to voice support.

2. Attend the Metro Council budget hearing Tuesday June 6 at 4:30pm-5:30pm. We are presenting as part of Department of Information Technology (pdf). The location is City Hall, Council Chambers on the 3rd floor of 601 West Jefferson Street, Louisville, KY 40202.

3. Sign the Open Letter from the community in support of Metro’s KY Wired partnership. Then share the link with your friends and all types of city leaders.

If you support this project, please call or email your council representative to express your support for Louisville Metro’s partnership with Kentucky Wired. The vote for this is June 22.

Here is an infographic we created so you can learn more, and share along with this post. Lots of details and facts are after the image.

Quick facts about the project:

  • Adds 96.5 miles of fiber to our existing 21 mile municipal network.
  • 25 of 26 Louisville Metro council districts will benefit from this project.
  • Will primarily be used to support government operations saving on recurring costs for internet services.
  • Excess capacity will be leased to local companies to support their operations. It will be a public process that will favor no single internet service provider or telecommunications company. There is a potential for Louisville to generate between $5.8 and $41.4 million in new revenue by leasing excess capacity.
  • Will reduce the inequities related to internet infrastructure (Digital Divide).
  • This is an award-winning partnership for best IT collaboration.
  • For more details, check out Chris Seidt’s blog post: KY Wired: An Investment in our Future

Community Benefits

KY Wired/Louisville Metro Proposed Fiber Build

Inclusion and Coverage

  • As we state in our digital inclusion plan, we want all of our residents to have access to affordable, high-quality internet service. And, because this fiber build touches over 95% of our council districts, it will ensure that all of our community has access to high-quality internet. This is essential to ensuring that all of our residents and businesses, no matter where they are located have an opportunity to compete in the global market.

Cost Savings

  • Building this essential fiber network without our partnership would cost Louisville taxpayers $16.3 million.
  • With the partnership, it will cost Louisville Metro $5.4 million, which represents a cost-savings of $10.9 million to taxpayers.
  • Additionally, it immediately saves Louisville Metro $78,000 in annual operating expenses at current service levels, and will reduce future expenditures as Metro’s bandwidth needs increase.

Increase Services

  • 130 traffic signals will get connected to the downtown traffic control center immediately and will give us a platform to expand it further in the future.
  • Connecting to those 130 signals will help reduce congestion along key corridors such as Westport, Hurstbourne, Taylorsville Road, Dixie Highway and Preston Highway. These corridors also happen to be some of the most congested in Louisville.
  • 18 Public Safety cameras, and the ability to expand the network with significantly reduced costs.
  • 31 Metro buildings will be connected to gigabit service, which will increase organizational productivity
  • Also, this fiber build will allow us to cost-effectively deploy Smart City sensors around our community, which will help us make our government operations more efficient and effective.

Revenue Generation

Because we will not use all of the capacity right away, there will be the potential to lease fiber-optic cable to internet service providers and telecommunications companies.

Based on national research, we expect to generate between $5.8 to $41.4 million revenue annually from our excess fiber:

  • $350-$6000 per month/per strand/per mile (based on this research)
  • 72 strands (half of 144 capacity available for lease)
  • 72 strands * 96 miles = 6,912 strand miles
  • 6,912 strand miles * $350/strand = $2,419,200 if all available strands are leased
  • 20% leased = $483,840/month = $5,806,080/year at $350/strand/mile

(Revised, 6/14/17): The №1 priority of this project is to provide improved internet service for residents at a lower cost while supporting government buildings and services, ultimately reducing the digital divide. Because we will not use all of the capacity right away, there will be the potential to lease fiber-optic cable to internet service providers and telecommunications companies. However, there are many variables involved in this process including price setting. It is far too soon to make precise projections regarding the potential scope or estimated revenue possibilities.

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