Just think — sometime a couple of years from now, a Shelby resident can stream their favorite movie through their own municipality’s broadband network.
As part of its effort to assess the opportunities for high speed interest service for the entire community, the City of Shelby is currently taking steps to determine what citizens think of the idea.
To that end, the City has authorized an online survey to help determine if a municipal broadband utility would work.
The survey is easy to take and can be accessed here. Please note that this is for Shelby residents.
Other Ohio cities and villages have municipal broadband, including Yellow Springs and Fairlawn. Some states have outlawed or put roadblocks in place to make it difficult for cities to take this step.
A few months ago, Shelby issued a request for proposals for a firm to develop a feasibility study on a fiber optic broadband network for the city, which is approximately 6.5 square miles in size. The city already operates its own electric utility, and is a member of American Municipal Power.
In 2013, Everstream ran a fiber route through Shelby, and has a fiber hub located in a city facility.
It is anticipated that a needs assessment and feasibility study will take four to five months, and the survey is a part of that process. The network would conceivably be in operation as early as 2021. Vantage Point Solutions, Inc., a firm from South Dakota, was hired by the City in late April after the RFP process brought in multiple submissions. The flat fee for the study, approved by City Council, was $46,400.