New Hampshire

New Hampshire FastRoads adding customers

Submitted by acohill on Tue, 11/26/2013 - 13:51

FastRoads is a Gigabit network designed and built by Design Nine for New Hampshire FastRoads LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Monadnock Economic Development Corporation. One of the surprises, as we add more customers, is the unexpected demand for the 50 Meg Internet service, which is turning out to be higher than expected. On the FastRoads network, every connection is a Gigabit circuit capable of delivering multiple services from several different providers.

Calix selected for FastRoads Gigabit to the Home network

Submitted by acohill on Mon, 07/23/2012 - 10:01

PETALUMA, CA – July 23, 2012 – Calix, Inc. (NYSE: CALX) today announced that New Hampshire FastRoads (NH FastRoads) has selected the Calix E7-2 Ethernet Service Access Platform (ESAP) and 700GE family of optical network terminals (ONTs) to provide point-to-point gigabit Ethernet services to underserved subscribers in 35 communities throughout the western part of the state. NH FastRoads has partnered with Network New Hampshire Now (NNHN), a 470-mile Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) awarded fiber network project funded by a $44.5 million BTOP Broadband Stimulus grant and $21.5 million in private and in-kind support, to leverage existing infrastructure to bring advanced broadband services throughout the Upper Valley and Monadnock regions, including fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) projects in Rindge and Enfield. The combined efforts of NH FastRoads and NNHN in this new project will bring one of the nation’s premiere networks to rural western New Hampshire and keep this part of the state a vibrant location for innovative businesses, citizens, and educational institutions.

“New Hampshire as a whole has been underserved by broadband for years, with large portions of our population having to rely on dial-up and wireless services,” said Carole Monroe, executive director of NH FastRoads. “This new fiber network will be a powerful tool to further the economic development of the state that began with the NNHN middle-mile project, while continuing to improve the lives of our existing residents and businesses and attract new business to the area. Calix, with its broad experience with fiber access networks and deep understanding of stimulus projects, will be a true asset in the delivery of advanced services to residents and the extension of fiber across the region.”

NH FastRoads is a Limited Liability Company (LLC) of the Monadnock Economic Development Corporation. The organization was established to bring accessible and affordable broadband to the towns of the Monadnock and Upper Valley regions of New Hampshire. NH FastRoads’ mission is to ensure that homes, businesses, and institutions of the region have the best broadband infrastructure to support jobs and sustainable economic development. The organization’s work will enable delivery of a variety of broadband services beyond high-speed data, including voice telephony, Internet Protocol television (IPTV), movies on demand, business-class videoconferencing, health care services such as in- home monitoring, home and business security, computer backup, public access television, Internet radio, and many other advanced services.

Design Nine has provided the network design and project management for the effort. Design Nine's President, Andrew Cohill said, "We evaluated equipment from many vendors, and in the end, Calix had the most capable equipment and the most attractive technical support package. We're glad to have Calix powering FastRoads’ Gigabit-to-the-Home network."

“With the construction of some middle-mile Broadband Stimulus projects already coming to a completion, we are beginning to see a natural extension of these anchor institution focused networks to target residences and businesses, just as NH FastRoads is undergoing in New Hampshire,” John Colvin, senior vice president of North American sales and marketing. “This kind of project is exactly what the Broadband Stimulus program was designed to be – a catalyst for long term broadband expansion and economic development in each region awarded. We look forward to working with NH FastRoads as they improve the lives and businesses of residents of western New Hampshire with this powerful fiber access network.”

New Hampshire governor stresses importance of broadband

Submitted by acohill on Mon, 01/10/2011 - 11:54

It is still rare to have a politician address the issue of broadband in any sensible way, but incoming Governor John Lynch just set the bar a little higher by noting that ubiquitous access to "big" broadband is essential to jobs growth and economic development. Here is what he has to say.


Today, however, infrastructure is more than roads and bridges. Our companies and citizens need access to high-speed Internet to compete in this economy. Through the federal stimulus, we are leveraging more than $66 million in federal and private funds to build an expanded broadband highway for New Hampshire. A project that will support 700 jobs, improve communications, and make it easier to connect all parts of our state to high-speed and affordable broadband. Let us build the information highway of the 21st century. Let us bring affordable broadband to all of New Hampshire.

New Hampshire towns demand right to control their economic future

Submitted by acohill on Thu, 02/04/2010 - 09:36

A coalition of New Hampshire towns and other interested parties are encouraging state legislators to give New Hampshire towns and cities the right to bond for telecommunications infrastructure. Unsurprisingly, the incumbent providers are not excited about the notion, even though largely rural New Hampshire has tens of thousands of residents still on dial-up and one of the providers is having severe financial difficulties. The towns see it as an issue of economic survival. Who wants to live in a rural community, no matter how great the quality of life, if there is no broadband or only "little" broadband?

The towns have correctly distinguished between "little" broadband (DSL, cable, wireless) and "big" broadband. They want big broadband, because that represents the future of economic development and the ability of these towns to retain existing businesses and to attract new ones. Here is an exquisite irony: a fiber cable manufacturer in rural New Hampshire can't get the bandwidth they need to do what they want to do to manage the plant properly.

In exchange for bonding authority, the towns have wisely agreed to only build open access community broadband networks, in which all services for businesses and residents would be sold by private sector providers. So in rural parts of the state where the incumbents are saying it is too expensive to build a private network, the towns are saying, "Okay, we get it. We will build a shared network and let you, Mr. Incumbent, use it to reach customers you can't afford to build to on your own."

Why would the incumbents be opposed to that? It opens them up to competition.

Segway inventor builds electric car

Submitted by acohill on Mon, 11/10/2008 - 08:53

Up in New Hampshire, a new electric vehicle is undergoing road tests. New Hampshire is not normally counted as one of the big auto-producing states, but the move to electric vehicles is likely to bring some new players into the field. As a side issue, the government might have more impact by giving a few million dollars to every firm in the U.S. working on electric vehicle technology rather than trying to bail out the high cost Detroit manufacturers.

Dean Kamen, inventor of the Segway two wheel electric vehicle, is now road-testing a small electric car powered by batteries, with a Stirling engine that recharges the batteries as needed and can also run the heater and defroster. The Stirling engine runs on almost any kind of combustible fuel, including gas, diesel fuel, and biofuels. Kamen has stayed away from the more complicated hybrid designs that use both a gas engine and an electric motor to propel the car. In Kamen's design, the electric motor does all the propulsion, just like Chevrolet's Volt design.

New Hampshire HB 653 approved 22-1 in Senate

Submitted by acohill on Mon, 03/20/2006 - 12:48

New Hampshire state senators voted 22-1 in favor of HB 653, which gives local governments in the state the authority not only to create and own communitywide broadband networks, but also to use bonding authority to pay for such networks, just as communities use bonds to build other municipal infrastucture like roads, water, and sewer.

I think this is one of several models we will see emerge as a standard way for communities to undertake these projects. Bonds are a time tested and well understood financial vehicle that communities have used for decades, to build systems much more complex and more expensive than fiber and wireless. Design Nine completed a telecommunications master plan for the northern half of New Hampshire in 2005.

Counting the microenterprise

Submitted by acohill on Wed, 10/19/2005 - 10:43

In New Hampshire, economic developers did a study of business ownership and found that 18.5% of all private, non-farm employment in the state was tied to microenterprises. A microenterprise is defined as a business that employs between one and five people, including the owner, and requires no more than $35,000 in start up capital (Business NH Magazine, March 2005).

So in New Hampshire, a fifth of the economy is based on companies with less than five people!

So here is a homework assignment. Go back to your local economic developers and elected leaders (who usually appoint the economic developers), and ask them these questions:

  • What percentage of jobs do these businesses account for?
  • What programs are in the current economic development plan to help existing microbusinesses grow?
  • What programs are in the current economic development plan to help local entrepreneurs start microbusinesses?
  • What programs are in the current economic development plan to attract entrepreneurs from other areas that want to relocate and start a microbusiness?
  • What amenities, services, and community attributes do relocating microbusiness entrepreneurs look for, and do we have a plan in place to get them and market them?

    If you do not get satisfactory answers to these questions, your region may be ignoring the fastest growing source of jobs in the United States, with a 600% increase over the last decade in the microbusiness category.

  • New Hampshire does it right

    Submitted by acohill on Tue, 03/01/2005 - 10:15

    A bill under consideration by the New Hampshire legislature would give municipalities and regions the statutory authority to use bonds to build out telecom infrastructure. This is exactly the right approach. For one, it's a familiar and successful model that has been used for decades to finance other kinds of public facilities (e.g. roads, water, sewer, industrial parks, etc.). More importantly, it recognizes that there is an issue of the common good here, and that community investments are important to the future of communities.

    Let's hope this gets passed. We need some good models for the rest of the country.

    New Hampshire plans for technology

    Submitted by acohill on Wed, 01/19/2005 - 21:04

    The northern region of New Hamphsire is taking control of it's economic future by developing a technology master plan for the region, as reported by the AP.

    One of the drivers of the project is the need to be competitive from an economic development perspective. Design Nine is providing the coordination and guidance for the effort.

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