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Broadband Community Development & Infrastructure

OneCommunity provides broadband network services for Northeast Ohio public schools, hospitals, libraries and government entities. Our mission is to advance Northeast Ohio’s economic development by expanding high-speed broadband access to improve health, education and government services.

Projects

Currently our biggest community infrastructure project is a collaboration with the City of Cleveland to build a 100-Gigabit fiber network that will run from ideastream in downtown Cleveland to University Hospitals in University Circle. The $1.02-million ultra-high-speed network will run through Cleveland’s Health-Tech Corridor, and is supported by a $700,000 grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration. Formally announced in November 2014, the project will get underway in early 2015 and be completed by the summer.

The Connected Health Pilot Telepresence Program, undertaken in 2013, gave high school students at the Cleveland School of Science and Medicine and Cleveland Early College High School at John Hay the opportunity to engage by telepresence with medical students from the Case Western Reserve University’s School of Medicine and with health professionals from the Cleveland Clinic’s Office of Civic Education.


The pilot was built on infrastructure donated by Cisco and served as a catalyst for a public/private partnership to utilize telepresence for students to explore community health issues. Building on the success of this pilot, a consortium of 21 schools and 16 institutional partners have assembled and are seeking funds to scale the pilot into a Connected Collaboration Platform (CCP). The CCP will provide schools with a growing repository of resources (human, instructional, and technical) to enable student-centric learning that extends beyond the classroom.

The Big Gig Challenge, launched in August 2014, attracted a dozen regional communities to compete for a grant from OneCommunity to help fund innovative and creative broadband projects designed to stimulate their economies. Finalists submitted their detailed proposals in early December and the winner(s) will be announced before the end of 2014. The winning project(s) will get underway in 2015.

Connecting  Students: In an open-bid competition, OneCommunity leveraged the existing fiber-optic network infrastructure it owns and operates to win a $1.2 million bid to install and maintain dark fiber connecting Northeast Ohio schools to the State of Ohio’s high-spead OARnet backbone. Three Information Technology Centers are already benefiting from new 10Gbps connections: the Stark/Portage Area Computer Consortium (SPARCC) in Canton; the Northeast Ohio Network for Education Technology (NEONET) in Cuyahoga Falls, and the Northern Ohio Educational Computer Association (NOECA) in Sandusky. Future installations under the grant will include the Cleveland Metropolitan School District, Canton City Schools and Akron Public Schools.

In March 2014, OneCommunity launched Everstream, a for-profit organization serving the high-speed networking needs of enterprise businesses throughout Northeast Ohio. Everstream’s fiber-based services are available in 24 counties and connect fiber-based networks to hundreds of office buildings, bringing Cleveland to the forefront of next-generation broadband offerings. Everstream’s activities will contribute to the core mission of OneCommunity, as profits generated will support OneCommunity’s commitment to community engagement and related programs.

Convenings

Throughout the year, OneCommunity brings together members of the community for events featuring local innovators, nationally known experts, and others with focus on important technology topics. These include:

  • Public and private sector leaders learned first-hand how “smart” development can occur and lead to a truly intelligent community at the Cleveland Intelligent Communities Breakfast on July 23, 2015.
  • On July 14, 2015, over 150 guests filed into Music Box Supper Club in the Flats to be engaged by Northeast Ohio IoT innovations for the Cleveland [R]IoT Happy Hour. It was a fabulous showing, with 13 unique IoT demonstrations from NEO-based corporations, startups, and students.
  • OneCommunity welcomed Doug Cutting, Co-Founder of Hadoop, for the Big Data Business Breakfast on May 19, 2015 at Case Western Reserve University’s Tinkham Veale University Center Ballroom.
  • Over 200 professionals came together on April 7, 2015 to Realize the Internet of Things at the Cleveland [R]IoT Regional Summit. This lunch and learn featured four speakers who explored the Internet of Things and what it means for the future, specifically in Northeast Ohio.
  • Over 40 young women from Northeast Ohio came together for the Cleveland Young Women’s IoT Olympiad March 13-14, 2015 to learn, collaborate, and bring forth their ideas on technology and innovation.
  • The Town Hall meeting on “The Future of Education: One Student at a Time,” co-sponsored with the Northeast Ohio Council on Higher Education (NOCHE) and ideastream on December 1, 2014;
  • The visit from nationally known technology activist Susan Crawford in November 2014 for a presentation at the City Club of Cleveland, followed by workshops on the issue of open data and responsive government;
  • The first Tech Town Hall co-sponsored by OneCommunity and ideastream on October 1, 2014. This event brought together four technology industry leaders to consider what our region does well and where we can do better. They also discussed what policies will be needed to establish Cleveland as a destination for entrepreneurial tech companies;
  • A convening to meet Marie Kittredge, the newly appointed Director of the ambitious Opportunity Corridor Project. Ms. Kittredge gave a presentation and took questions on the potential economic and community benefits the project offers to the surrounding neighborhoods.

 

Past Projects

We’ve received two stimulus awards for collaborative efforts. The first was for “Connect Your Community”, a project to train over 11,000 Northeast Ohioans to learn computers and the Internet so they could cross the digital divide. Participants received 20-25 hours of computer and Internet training, were given access to a computer and were part of a plan providing access to affordable broadband Internet. That project ended in 2013.

Another major community project was the expansion of our all-fiber network by 1,000 miles to connect 27 counties in Northern Ohio. This allowed for-profit Internet service providers the ability to use this network and allowed them to offer more affordable broadband rates to business consumers and individuals.

Learn more about these two projects that allowed us to help strengthen Northeast Ohio’s access to the Internet and ultra high-speed networking:


 

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