KC mayor brags on high speed internet 12/20/2013

Published 12:00 am Friday, December 20, 2013

KC mayor brags on high speed internet

By John Howell Sr.
Former Kansas City, Kansas mayor Joe Reynolds on Wednesday told Batesville city officials and supporters of C Spire’s Get Fiber First campaign that providing ultra-high-speed fiber optic Internet access to homes is an economic development issue that can bring greater returns than the traditional infrastructure incentives that the city offers to lure industry.

Reynolds was the mayor in the Kansas city who joined with leaders of Kansas City, MO to enter Google’s competition to bring the fiber optic Internet service to the metropolitan area straddling the Missouri/Kansas state line.

Reynolds left office in April and has been hired by C Spire to help implement its revolutionary plan to bring high speed fiber optic to residences in small Mississippi cities.

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The former mayor said that his decision to pursue the high-speed service came when he asked himself, “What are we doing to future-proof ourselves?”

In Kansas City, Kansas, one year after the first residential high speed fiber optic came online, 30 new home businesses have sprung up.

“People are moving in from all over to get one gigabyte speed,” he said.

Home values have increased in areas of the city where the fiber optic cable has been installed, Reynolds said.

The MLS (real estate multiple listing service) includes a line as to whether you have a line installed in your house,” Reynolds said.

Online sources indicate that the average value increase to homes with fiber optic in KC, KA from $3,000 to $5,000.

Google fiber optic availability in KC, KA has also brought increased Internet speeds and lower pricing from competing Internet providers there, according to the online MIT Technology Review.
Meeting with Reynolds were Batesville mayor Jerry Autrey, aldermen Ted Stewart and Eddie Nabors, and representatives from businesses and professional offices in Batesville.

With Reynolds was a C Spire delegation that included Batesville C Spire store manager Kent Breckingridge.

“Here at the store, I get asked every day, ‘When’s it coming?’” Breckingridge said.

Batesville was one of nine cities selected from among 33 in the preliminary round of C Spire Get Fiber First competition. Once the nine finalists were announced, the nine cities were divided into “Fiberhoods” with pre-registration goals from 35 percent to 45 percent of housing units.

Wednesday’s meeting was scheduled to lay groundwork to encourage pre-registration in Batesville’s fiberhoods. The Feed The Speed Batesville Facebook page has a link for pre-registration as does the web site: http://www.cspire.com/fiberhome/fiber_first_finalists.html
Fiberhood residents can also pre-register at the C Spire store.