Several fiber internet franchises approved for Louisville - Tri-State News, Weather & Sports

Several fiber internet franchises approved for Louisville

Nick Hamm Nick Hamm
District 11 Councilman Kevin Kramer District 11 Councilman Kevin Kramer

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Ultra high-speed internet is one step closer to becoming more widespread in Louisville. Members of the Metro Public Works Committee have approved several franchises to lay fiber optic cable in the Metro.

The franchise approvals will now go to the rest of Metro Council for a vote. That's promising news to many businesses, especially local start-up companies run from home.

"Everything I do everyday is on the internet," said Nick Hamm, a Jeffersontown resident. "I have multiple email accounts that I have to manage."

Operating more than five screens at once, Hamm proved to be not only tech savvy, but tech-dependent.

"If I didn't have access to the internet I can't access any of the systems that we use to run our business," said Hamm who runs Trekbin, a cloud-consulting business, from home.

While Hamm is able to access high-speed internet in the Jeffersontown area, he would like to see more options offered throughout the Metro. 

District 11 Councilman Kevin Kramer has been working with other members of Metro Council to make that a reality.

"What we did was make it possible for three different companies to actually lay fiber in the rights of way that will offer high-speed internet access to anyone who wants to tap on," said Kramer. "Of course, there's a fee but it makes that possible."

Representatives with BGN Networks, Fiber Technologies and Sifi Networks all appeared before the Metro Public Works Committee Tuesday. During the special meeting, Kramer said the three companies detailed their plans to run fiber optic cable to Louisville residents and commercial customers. 

"These companies need permission from Metro Louisville to put the fiber on to our property so they ultimately can get it to the end user," said Kramer. 

That permission now awaits council approval as a whole during a Metro Council meeting set for Thursday at 6 p.m. in council chambers. Approval could mean a big step toward improving access for under-served areas.

"Time Warner, and any other cable provider, will realize this is competition for them and hopefully it'll drive down prices," said Kramer. "What we've seen across the country is when you add these high-speed internet, it drives down the costs of telecommunications."

Eager to opt for the best bandwidth for the buck, Hamm sees the potential for increased options as a catalyst for increased opportunities on both a local and global scale.

"It creates so many opportunities for commerce and opportunities for new businesses that aren't available for people who don't have high-speed internet," said Hamm.

Copyright 2014 WAVE 3 News. All rights reserved.

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