Princeton Wants Fiber: 90% Vote For Broadband

IMG_2151Nearly 500 hundred voters of Princeton packed Thomas Prince School tonight, leaving standing room only to discuss and vote whether to approve funds for “make ready” costs necessary for a broadband fiber network build. After 90 minutes of discussion and Q&A, the town of Princeton spoke loud and clear: Princeton wants fiber! The town voted 442-51 in favor — that’s 90% of all voters!

In case there was any question before about the pent-up demand for fiber in town, the numbers attending the special town meeting remove all doubt.  The 493 in attendance tonight was a record-breaking crowd for a special town meeting, breaking the previous record (360 attending the Library renovation meeting back ~15 years ago).

Our long-time quest for broadband has one final, but essential hurdle. We have one last vote to take – a ballot vote at Town Hall Annex on Dec. 9. We will provide full details on that in the coming days.

Princetonites, we have looked with longing eyes at our Wachusett neighbor’s broadband capabilities for years and wondered why we couldn’t have the same. As long as we all get out and vote on Dec. 9, all that is about to change!

You can also read The Landmark article on the vote here »

 

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8 comments

  1. Laurie Cote

    As an attendee last night, I am very happy this is moving forward. It would be interesting, in the future, in addition to saying where they live in town, the speakers should also state whether they have DSL or not. I’m be willing to bet a fair amount of money that 90% of the dissenters last night had access to DSL and don’t give a damn about those of us who cannot access it.

  2. alex ursprung

    There will always be people who vote solely for their own self-interest (that is, not wishing to improve internet access for everyone because they either have it already or don’t care). But the good news is, there is overwhelming support for this project. Many thanks to Mr. Wagner for his efforts in this!

  3. Phil Gransewicz

    I was going to speak up at the meeting last night but time was getting late and people were antsy to vote.

    It will be great to have a fiber optic network in town for internet access and phone, BUT it has to be reliable as well as fast. I have lived in Princeton for a whooping 3 months and during that time, I have lost power THREE times. On the day of our closing, the power was out to most of the town I believe, not sure why. Another time a tree took down lines on an adjacent street and not sure what happened the other time.

    I sure hope that Matrix is required to keep people and equipment IN TOWN to provide prompt restoration of internet service. One thing Princeton has is a LOT of trees and I’d like to see an aggressive tree management program by PMLD and the town to protect the lines and improve reliability of electrical and broadband service in town. As this work is proceeding through the entire town, it might also be worth noting any tree work that should be done in order to minimize future outages.

    • Laurie Cote

      Phil, the PMLD used to have an aggressive tree maintenance program. But people complained because it took “the country out of Princeton”.

      • Laurie Cote

        And I was NOT one of those who was worried about taking the country out of Princeton BTW. Just letting you know as a long time Princeton resident.

      • Phil Gransewicz

        I was afraid that was the problem. I work 45 minutes from our house. I am not looking forward to panic phone calls this winter from my wife who is at home taking care of our 18 month old toddler and new born (in February). No heat, no lights, soon no broadband, etc. It seems Princeton has more than its share of trees and forest and those trees overhanging our vital infrastructure wires can sacrifice a branch or two.

        If the broadband is down repeatedly due to the lack of tree pruning it will get a bad, and unfair, rap. I hope Matrix is aware of this tree situation as it may increase their/our broadband maintenance costs if this situation continues. I wonder how much of our electric money is going to repair down electric wires that could have been avoided with proper tree pruning? I guess I’ll have to see when the PMLD board meets and ask them.

  4. Pingback: Through Rain, Sleet, or Snow, the Finish Line for Broadband Arrives | Princeton Broadband

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