Blazing Fast Internet Puts Gigabit Cities on the Map

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There is a push underway for communities across the United States to ramp up Internet speeds by connecting residents to fiber networks with speeds up to 100 times the speed of a typical broadband connection.  This campaign became popular when Google began a competition to award one U.S. city the opportunity to become a ‘gigabit city’ by installing this highspeed fiber connection.  Kansas City ultimately won the competition, and the city has realized economic, social and cultural innovations that would not be possible to achieve with the city’s old broadband networks. 

Unlike networks made of copper wires, which use electricity to deliver data, networks made of fiber wires are able to transmit data much faster by using beams of light.  These fiber optic lines are made of thin strands of optically pure glass which are arranged in a way that they can transmit light over long distances and at speeds much faster than traditional lines.  

Cities across the U.S. are taking notice of this new technology and have begun making plans to install fiber networks.  One of these cities is Jasper, Indiana, which has unveiled a plan to rewire the entire city with fiber networks.  Jasper hopes to have these networks built within three years.  There has also been a push for this technology right here in Florida.  The Jacksonville City Council has just announced that it will establish a committee to investigate establishing a fiber network within the city.  

The benefits of these fiber optic networks are endless, and there is no reason why Gainesville should not strive to become a gigabit city.  GRUCom, a multi-service utility owned by the City of Gainesville, has announced that it will begin building a fiber network in the area known as Innovation Square.  This is a good start, but the campaign for these highspeed networks should be citywide.  Fiber access for Gainesville businesses will help to stimulate economic development and continue to magnify a rapidly growing city.

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Virginia MacKoul

Virginia is a graduate from the University of Florida's College of Design Construction and Planning with a degree in Sustainability and the Built Environment, and a minor in Urban Regional Planning. Virginia joined the Front Street team in 2011, as an intern. Upon graduation, Virginia joined the Front Street team full-time as the Director of Client Services. Ms. MacKoul’s addition furthers Front Street’s continued growth and expansion within Gainesville and other North Central Florida markets. She was promoted to Director of Marketing in 2014 and now manages the firm’s team of interns and oversees all marketing and branding activity. Virginia was born in Boston and moved to Lee County, Florida in 1997. Virginia graduated her high school's International Baccalaureate program and started at the University of Florida with a focus on Architecture. Virginia shares Front Street's passion of giving back to the community and those in need. Virginia's hobbies include photography, cooking, football, movies, music, and spending time with her dog, Brinkley.

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