A new partnership is expanding broadband internet access in rural Arizona

(Shutterstock Photo)

By Good Info News Wire Team

April 25, 2024

The Omaha-based firm is contracted to operate, maintain, and lease space in fiber-optic conduit installed along Interstates 17, 19, and 40. These efforts are the state’s latest attempt to improve internet access and connectivity in rural areas.

A new partnership is expanding broadband internet access in rural Arizona

Photo courtesy of eX² Technology LLC via Facebook.

The Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) and the Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA) entered the agreement along with Governor Katie Hobbs. The partnership aims to leverage state-owned, open-access conduit installed by ADOT to increase connectivity in rural Arizona.

This initiative complements a state law that allows private broadband providers to install, operate, and assist telecommunications equipment along state highways.

Aside from increasing rural internet access, ADOT has plans to utilize the fiber-optic conduit for intelligent transportation systems technology. This includes traffic cameras, weather stations, overhead message boards, and wrong-way driving detection. The infrastructure will also support emerging technologies like automated and connected vehicles.

The initial phase of this 25-year agreement includes fiber-optic conduits along I-17 from Phoenix to Flagstaff, I-19 from Tucson to Nogales, and upcoming installations on Interstate 40 from Flagstaff to California. The infrastructure will be leased to internet service providers (ISPs) aiming to extend broadband internet access. The plan is expected to start in the coming months.

Ultimately, the conduits will further enable the state’s broadband expansion efforts, especially in underserved and unserved areas of Arizona. More than $1 billion in funding has been allocated to implement initiatives such as the Broadband Equity Access and Deployment (BEAD) Program and Digital Equity Program.

These initiatives, overseen by the State Broadband Office located within the ACA, aim for universal broadband access for all Arizonans.

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This article first appeared on Good Info News Wire and is republished here under a Creative Commons license.A new partnership is expanding broadband internet access in rural ArizonaA new partnership is expanding broadband internet access in rural Arizona

This story was generated in part by AI and edited by The Copper Courier staff.

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  • Good Info News Wire Team

    Good Info News Wire is supported by the Good Information Foundation, a public benefit corporation with a mission of increasing the flow of good, factual information online to promote local journalism and counter the spread of misinformation.

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