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Reason Foundation

Fiber to Public Housing

Steven Titch
October 8, 2008, 10:10am

Verizon has agreed with public housing officials in Yonkers, N.Y., to provide FiOS TV and Internet, which operates of a fiber-to-the-premises platform, to 2,029 apartments across 18 buildings. The deal counters notions that commercial service providers would not serve low-income areas – a sentiment that has been used to push taxpayer-financed, government-owned broadband service for close to a decade. As noted in the posting below, the era of these boondoggles is coming to an end. What's happening instead is that the market, acknowledging the demand is there, is funding deployment to meet it. That the Yonkers government recognized this, and chose to work with Verizon as opposed to compete with it, got service to more residents faster. As Multichannel News Reports:
Verizon said it has already begun the buildout of its all-fiber-optic network to the apartment buildings in Yonkers. The telco plans to begin offering service to some buildings later this month, with FiOS services scheduled to be available to all residents by year-end. The Municipal Housing Authority for the City of Yonkers is the second-largest public housing authority in metropolitan area, after the New York City Housing Authority. It provides affordable housing to eligible low-income families and individuals, and helps them become self-sufficient and economically independent. As a part of the housing authority's community outreach, it opened a computer center where residents can access the Internet or take free classes to become more computer literate.


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