Broadband’s Coming ‘Round the Mountain’

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A popular Rocky Mountain, Colorado tourist destination is known for being an escape from the outside world, but to tourists and locals that doesn’t necessarily mean being off the grid.  Residents recently voted in favor of bringing broadband to their community, according to the Estes Park Trail Gazette.   

“In the 2018 community survey, broadband was ranked the number one need to improve above workforce housing, street repairs and numerous other services,” confirmed Reuben Bergsten, Town Utilities Director.

The favorable vote means that the town of Estes Park can now move forward with installing broadband service that is community owned and operated. The Trail Gazette, noted that no one attending the meeting spoke against the measure. The existing smart grid fiber optic infrastructure operated by Light and Power will serve as a starting point for the project.  

FullStack, a firm that helps start up enterprises get their digital resources up to speed, was brought in to consult with Estes Park. CEO Josh Cramer said, “We will likely have the capability of delivering a gigabit to each customer, but also a 10-gigabit service and some of the equipment that we’re looking at will support the future speed upgrades of 25 and 45 gigabits. So as that hardware rolls out we’ll be able to just kind of do a drop in replacement of some things or in addition to those higher speed services, so I feel like we’re getting in at the right time with this fiber network here.”

The town has been discussing the broadband situation since 2015 and residents are enthusiastic about finally moving forward. “I need reliable internet,” said Mike Bertrand, an asset manager working remotely for a real estate investment firm. “I’ve had fiber in other locations in the past and it’s incredible. The speeds you get are just fantastic.”

March 22, 2019

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