It isn’t like there hasn’t been any screaming in the past about putting fiber in when San Francisco digs up the streets for the new sewer system, but Tim Redmond makes it seem so in this recent editorial in the SF Bay Guardian. San Francisco Board of Supervisor Tom Ammiano proposed this nearly 4 years ago. His proposal to study deploying fiber was stalled for more than three years by the Mayor’s initiative to deploy WiFi with Google and Earthlink. Once that deal died, when Earthlink couldn’t figure out how to make a buck off of this plan, then San Francisco started to study this again. I have to throw some of the blame at Mr. Amiano’s office as they didn’t try to push this study through during the three years it was stalled.
Mr Redmond does make a point. San Francisco will miss this opportunity to significantly reduce the cost of installing fiber for the city and the city residents if they have to go back and dig up the roads again. Just like they missed the opportunity to do this 10 years ago when there were nearly a dozen different fiber providers installing fiber in the ground and they city could have demanded that a portion of those strands be handed over to the city. Or the city could have pulled city owned fiber when other companies were pulling theirs.
The City did eventually come out with a fiber study that raves about the opportunities with city-wide fiber deployment. Lets hope that it has an impact with the city’s direction on municipal broadband.