Google Fiber Logo. Courtesy Image.

Google Fiber announced Thursday that its design phase for the city is complete, and it will begin deploying 4,000 linear miles of fiber-optic cable across San Antonio.

Once completed, San Antonio will join a small but growing group of U.S. cities where residential and commercial users will be able to tap into a connection where gigabit speeds are up to 1,000 megabits per second, or 100 times faster than basic broadband.

Google Fiber sent out a brief email alert and short press statement this week about its progress in San Antonio. Google Fiber, which launched in 2012, is already in operation in four other U.S. cities, including Austin. San Antonio would be the second Texas city to have a Google Fiber network.

“We’ve started to ramp up our Google construction efforts in San Antonio,” Clarissa Ramon, Google Fiber community impact manager, stated in the news release.”You’ll see us around town digging and stringing fiber cables so that we can deliver Google Fiber’s super fast Internet to the city. As we lay thousands of miles of fiber-optic cable throughout San Antonio, we’ll keep residents updated along the way.”

Google Fiber noted that the amount of fiber-optic cable being installed locally is enough to stretch from San Antonio to Canada and back. The company has not revealed exactly how long the full deployment of cable could take, but Ramon said the entire process will take place over several months.

The company has yet to reveal where, specifically, local construction will begin. However, San Antonio residents can enter their address at this link and be alerted when construction is to arrive in their neighborhood. According to Google Fiber, the network is mainly being built in the public right-of-way, alongside local water, gas and electrical infrastructure.

“Much of the network is attached to existing utility poles. In other areas, we perform underground construction, always doing our best to minimize disruption to traffic, neighborhoods, and existing utilities,” the email alert stated.

A construction hotline (877-454-6959) is available 24/7 for people who have concerns in their area where Google Fiber is working. Contractors working with Google Fiber will leave door-hangers to give residents and businesses a heads-up when construction is about to happen.

San Antonio officials and businesses have been eagerly awaiting the deployment of Google Fiber, since the company announced its plans for local expansion in Aug. 2015.

Mayor Ivy Taylor, among other local leaders, have said the super-fast Internet connections provided by Google Fiber and AT&T’s Gigapower will help to strengthen San Antonio’s businesses, particularly startups, and educational institutions. For now, officials have said it is too early to tell when Google Fiber will begin accepting signups for its service. Gigapower is already available locally.

Even in the last several months while designing the local network, Google Fiber has made good on its pledge toward community investment in different ways. In February, the company announced it would work with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to serve five San Antonio public housing communities through ConnectHome, a federal program designed to bridge the digital divide among socio-economic groups.

The Rivard Report noted in March how Google Fiber signed a lease to occupy the third and fourth floors of the historic Rand Building in downtown and open its local base of operations there. It’s at the Rand Building where Google Fiber joins Rackspace’s Open Cloud Academy, Techstars, Tech Bloc and other technology-driven organizations and companies.

Top Image: Google Fiber Logo. Courtesy Image.  

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Edmond Ortiz

Edmond Ortiz, a lifelong San Antonian, is a freelance reporter/editor who has worked with the San Antonio Express-News and Prime Time Newspapers.