Google Fiber — the long-promised, lighting-fast internet provider — is finally going live in San Antonio. Well, for a few people. And not right away.
According to a Tuesday press release, San Antonia residents living in Westover Hills or near West End Park (by Woodlawn Lake) can sign up for the new fiber optic internet service starting today. It is unclear how long it will take for applicants to get plugged into Google Fiber after signing up for the $55/month service — $15 dollars less than Google’s 11 other Fiber-ed cities (“Super fast Internet service for less than the speed limit on I-35,” according to the city’s Google Fiber manager, Tyler Wallis).
This announcement comes after years of three-way tug-of-war between Google officials, City Council, and irritated neighbors over the size and placement of vital infrastructure Google needed to build before going live. A North Side neighborhood committee successfully convinced the city to remove one of the so-called “Google huts” (small storage sheds for fiber cables) in their local park, temporarily putting the citywide project on hold. The only other Google hut rests uncontested in West End Park.
Those West Side residents, however, have just over a month to sign up for the service. Google will close sign-ups for those two west side neighborhoods on December 21. It is not clear where and when will start the next sign-ups or when those who have missed the deadline in west side can sign up again.
“Access to high-speed broadband is a critical piece of creating an economically viable city,” said Mayor Ron Nirenberg in the press release. “I am pleased to see increased investment in high-speed internet throughout the community. This infrastructure is crucial to enhanced economic development and educational opportunities for San Antonians.”
Google Fiber representatives will be setting up in coffeeshops, grocery stores, and community centers today (Tuesday) to answer resident’s questions and “share in the excitement.” Here are the locations:
|7:30 – 9:30 A.M.||Shipley Do-nuts, 1134 Culebra Rd.|
|7:30 – 9:30 A.M.||Rosella Coffee Company, 203 E. Jones Ave.|
|8:30 – 10:30 A.M.||Rosella at the Rand, 114 E. Houston St.|
|11 A.M. – 2 P.M.||Frank Garrett Community Center, 1226 NW 18th St.|
|2 – 5 P.M.||H–E–B, 2130 Culebra Rd.|
|2 – 5 P.M.||H–E–B, 9255 1fM 471 1west|
|4 – 6 P.M.||Woodlawn Snacks, 947 Cincinnati Ave.|
|8 – 10 P.M.||Steel City Pops, 812 S. Alamo St., Suite 101|
We are not sure how many San Antonia residents who have not heard of Google Fiber yet (the ones with arguably the most questions) will know this is going on before the day-long info session is over.