US Department of Commerce Awards Hayward $2.74 Million Grant to Construct Fiber-Optic Network
On September 14, 2016, the U.S. Department of Commerce, Economic Development Administration (EDA) awarded the City of Hayward a $2.74 million grant to support the design and installation of a fiber optic network to improve access to high-speed internet in the industrial zone.
“Today, access to broadband internet service is as vital to industry as electricity was a hundred years ago,” said Paul Nguyen, Economic Development Specialist. “This federal funding will help expand Hayward’s broadband infrastructure and enhance our community’s ability to attract new advanced industries. It will also provide our existing businesses with the tools they need be competitive in today’s high speed, data-driven global economy.”
The fiber optic network will leverage existing city-owned underground conduit and fiber optic cables used primarily for traffic communications and include new construction to complete a loop in the Industrial Technology and Innovation Corridor. This crescent-shaped corridor, located along Hayward’s western and southwestern city limit, is home to a wide range of businesses including manufacturers of food, pharmaceuticals, auto parts and electronics. The area is also becoming home to an increasing number of biotechnology and medical device makers.
New construction will include, at a minimum, the installation of 11 miles of new conduit and fiber optic cabling. Construction of the fiber loop is slated to begin in September 2017 and be completed the fall of 2019. Internet services will be offered by private provider(s), who will lease fiber optic cable strands and/or physical space from the City in the new conduit.
The City is currently in discussions with San Leandro Dark Fiber, who partnered with the City to submit the original grant application to the EDA in June 2015. The company is the service provider behind the City of San Leandro’s Lit San Leandro fiber network, which received a grant from the EDA in 2012.
“The creation of an affordable and robust fiber optic network servicing our business community has been a priority of the City and receiving the grant to assist in the construction of the fiber backbone will help give Hayward additional tools for targeted business attraction and retention,” said Micah Hinkle, Economic Development Manager.
The grant award comes on the heels of the formulation of the City’s Fiber Optic Master Plan. A draft plan, which will provide the results of a needs assessment and recommendations on the network’s technical specifications, route, management and phased implementation, is scheduled to be completed by the end of the year.
Download the full press release.