We want community broadband projects to read like a short story. The community realizes a need, they meet a partner, the get married, I mean connected, and like happily ever after. And sometimes it can happen that way and sometimes there are a lot more chapters to the story. It read more like an epic journey – not ups and downs necessarily, just not linear.
Scott County has an epic story and it was recently featured in Broadband Communities through a lens of tracing the partnerships with the county. The article is informative and inspirational, particularly to anyone is a similar boat or starting on a journey. Rather than try to retell it, I thought I’d try to pull out a timeline with a strong recommendation that you check out the article…
- 2002: works with school district and the county seat of Shakopee to build a hub-and-spoke network connecting public facilities.
- 2007: Minnesota Emergency Safety Board decided to upgrade the county 911 system – Scott goes fiber
- 2008: Using public-safety grant money in combination with tax-levy dollars, Scott County implemented a countywide fiber ring with Zayo
- 2009: expanded westward to join the Carver County network and swapped two fibers for two of Carver County’s fibers And in other directions with other providers
- 2015: enters into a joint-build partnership with the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community that saved hundreds of thousands of dollars for both parties
All of this and they are still working on plans for the future!