Guide for relocation to Steamboat Springs, CO

Broadband in the ‘Boat

Over the last decade, the Yampa Valley has experienced a surge in location-neutral employment, due in large part to the availability of high-quality broadband service, offering speeds in excess of 100 mbps. Several internet service providers operate in the Routt County, and through the collaborative efforts of Northwest Colorado Broadband (NCB) community partners continue to work toward facilitating abundant, affordable and redundant broadband service for all area residents and businesses.

NCB is a non-profit corporation governed by a board of directors that includes designees from Routt County, the City of Steamboat Springs, Steamboat Springs School District, Yampa Valley Electric Association, Steamboat Springs Chamber Resort Association, and Yampa Valley Medical Center. Since 2014, NCB has aggregated the demand of city, county, school district and YVEA facilities at a carrier-neutral location, securing redundant and ample service at a significantly lower cost.

In September 2017, as a first step toward county-wide service improvements, NCB entities completed construction of a $2.2 million, nine-mile fiber optic trunk line spanning Steamboat Springs, with lateral connections to additional anchor institution facilities, including Yampa Valley Medical Center. In addition to improving capacity, pricing and reliability for NCB entities, the project will provide open access to private internet service providers, with the goal of increased competition and improved service and pricing to meet residential and business needs. Funding for the project included s a $749,000 grant to Routt County from the Colorado Department of Local Affairs, federal education and healthcare grants, and cash and in-kind contributions from NCB entities.

Next steps for NCB include using a similar model of public/private partnerships to leverage investor funds with grants to extend the NCB network to the underserved and unserved areas of the county.   Service to these areas will likely include wireless service in lower density areas and fiber optic service where feasible.

 

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