Local News

Fayetteville Internet Company Wants To Create Fiber-Optic Network Throughout City

Posted December 10, 2000

— A Fayetteville-based Web-hosting company wants to build a fiber-optic network throughout the city.

Advanced Internet Technology(AIT) says installing fiber-optic lines throughout the city just makes sense.

"It means getting connected and building a metropolitan network. It means local companies and organizations can own and operate their own infrastructure," says Clarence Briggs, AIT president.

AIT is presenting its "Wiring Fayetteville" plan to city leaders. It says the combination of wiring the city with services it could provide can cut information technology costs for both public and private companies by up to 80 percent.

The idea sounds good to leaders for many reasons. One big plus is that fiber optics could be a big draw for economic development.

"One of the things we must do is get ahead of industry. Industry won't come unless infrastructure is in place," says City Councilman Don Talbot.

Fiber optics could offer a variety of services simultaneously, from telephones to cable TV to high-speed Internet access. To do so, AIT is looking for help. It wants the plan to be a public/private partnership with thePublic Works Commission(PWC) installing the fiber.

City leaders need to decide if it is a business they want to get into. They realize the potential, but continue to ask questions.

"There are advantages and disadvantages. Can we make money at it because the money we could make could help offset the tax burdens for our citizens," says city manager Roger Stancil.

PWC is currently working up a proposal to present to city councilmembers. AIT says, with or without the partnership, it will move ahead with its plan. The company believes there is no time to waste if it is to keep up and move ahead of the fast pace of technology.

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