Maryland broadband expansion moves forward

Maryland will soon begin expanding broadband access throughout the state through the use of a $115 million federal grant. The initiative will cover ten counties. The expansion will be coordinated through a new “logistics center,” and headquarters of One Maryland Broadband in Elkridge, Maryland. The bulk of the money will go to provide service to Prince Georges county.

As CivSource reported in March, broadband expansion in Maryland will be led by officials in Howard county. Maryland company IPX will provide logistics at the Elkridge headquarters in Howard county. The plan will connect state agencies and offices, schools, first responders and provide access through libraries.

Much of the expansion should be completed by 2013 as federal stimulus dollars will expire if not used by 2013. The grant money comes from the stimulus and will provide 1,300 miles of cable statewide. The cable will be county owned and will help cut costs by saving on leasing the lines from private providers which many counties currently do. The Governor hopes that the expansion will spur economic development, educational access and create jobs.

“We require a new type of infrastructure for the new economy,” said Governor O’Malley at the announcement.

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