BRIDGEPORT, W.Va. — The city of Bridgeport could become the state’s first gigabyte city, increasing the speed of Internet available to local residents up to 100-200 times its current speed.
Bridgeport City Council is planning to launch a pilot program through Citynet to potentially introduce 100 area homes to a high-speed fiber-optic network.
The six-month pilot program will require a vote for a $100,000 budget revision to fund the investment costs for material and equipment to power the system.
“High-speed Internet is going to be the modern-day equivalent of infrastructure for our city,” Mayor Mario Blount said. “We see this as an ability to attract capital and talent to our city.
“Broadband is going to be the foundation of any new economy going forward,” he continued. “The ability to download information — it encourages business and economic development.”
Citynet Chief Financial Officer Jim Martin said no other city in the nation will have faster services available to its residents.
“We believe so much in the project, we are not only participating by giving the city our services at no cost, but are prepared to invest capital dollars to help the project succeed,” Martin said…