NH group wants $66 million to build middle mile network

Network New Hampshire Now, a New Hampshire-based coalition, believes that if it had a fiber network in hand it would be able to not only give the state higher Internet access speeds, but an economic boost.

Led by the University of New Hampshire and the state Department of Resources and Economic Development (DRED), Network New Hampshire Now has applied for a $66 million broadband grant to build a middle mile network across the state to provide connectivity to other service providers, businesses and anchor institutions.

"In particular, the network designed for New Hampshire has openness as its core purpose, enabling affordable choices for all providers to reach areas of the state that have been difficult to service," said DRED Commissioner George Bald, adding that the Network New Hampshire Now proposal "puts the state on par with international fiber-optic broadband capacity and capability."

Similar to other middle mile projects such as Massachusetts-based Open Cape, Network New Hampshire Now's network will be a hybrid fiber/microwave network that will be built in three stages. If the organization is successful in getting the funding, they will create a private company dubbed New Hampshire Fiber Network that will manage and maintain the network when it is built.

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