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Press Release -- January 3rd, 2011
Source: Unite Private Networks
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City to share dark fiber installation with university

The city of Lincoln will participate in a project to install dark fiber through a portion of downtown Lincoln.

The city, the University of Nebraska and Unite Private Network will share equally the costs of the $248,000 project along Q Street from 10th to 19th streets and in the Antelope Valley project area. Fiber-optic cable also will be installed along 12th Street from Q to R streets and 14th Street from Q to P streets.

Dark fiber refers to unused fiber-optic cable. The dark strands can be leased or sold to individuals or companies that want to establish optical connections among their own locations.

The city's share of the fiber will be used for traffic control data, as a back-up system for 911 and at two parking garages that now lease phone lines for data, said Tim Pratt of the Lincoln Public Works/Utilities Department. The city also will have access to dark fiber within a few feet of Bennett Martin Library under agreements with the private company.

Unite Private Network will install and maintain the fiber and its conduit under an agreement unanimously approved by the Lincoln City Council on Monday afternoon. Under a previous contract with Unite Private Network, the city is allowed access to some fiber and the private company can use city ductwork to install the cable, according to Pratt.

It is more expensive to put fiber in the downtown area because of debris left below the road surface, such as old wooden blocks used for paving, Pratt said.

Reach Nancy Hicks at 402-473-7250 or nhicks@journalstar.com.

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