Oregon community's 5-year muni-fiber plan struggling

Sherwood, Ore., a small city southwest of Portland with about 16,000 residents, is knee-deep in cost overruns and service shortfalls after five years of trying to launch its own fiber-optic network. The city promised residents the service would give every home and business high-speed Internet access, and that the service would pay for itself and even create a revenue stream for the city.

Instead, it's followed the path of a number of other ambitious municipal fiber plans, struggling to get off the ground and bleeding capital.

Sherwood is one of about 50 municipalities nationwide that have connected or are trying to connect its residents and businesses via a municipal fiber network. Another 100 or so have launched wireless networks, and the results have been a hodgepodge of successes and failures.

In Sherwood, to date, taxpayers have laid out more than $1.55 million for a service that is anything but complete. One official called the 60-mile network a "significant money loser."

But, not all officials agree. The mayor contends the service eventually will turn into a cash cow as more businesses take advantage of it, and insists it will increase in value over time.

For more:
- See this Oregonlive.com article

Related articles
Telcos go to court over municipal fiber   
Palo Alto looks for new fiber buddy  
Utopia didn't turn out to be so perfect after all
iProvo was sold to Broadweave last year

Read more on