Last week I asked a sellerâ€™s agent to get the download speeds from a property in a not-so-rural part of Albemarle County.
“Here is what my tenant sent: â€¦ The results were: Pings 36 Download 2.89Mbps Upload 0.47Mbpsâ€
My client will not consider this property, nor will they consider 75% of the properties that they find interesting – properties a bit outside of the City with a couple acres under $500k.
Albemarle County is conducting a broadband survey (click through for the press release).
A few thoughts before you take this survey:
1 – This is just such an opportunity where this should be a City of Charlottesville and County of Albemarle (and UVA) survey, not an isolationist one.
2 – How does this fit in with the Albemarle County School system seeking to build a â€œdark fiberâ€ network? Note itâ€™s an â€œupgradeâ€ in the budget. (and whoâ€™s bidding on and building it?)
3 – High speed internet increases property values. I havenâ€™t found the numbers defined (yet) but Iâ€™ve heard that high speed adds $7,000 to a propertyâ€™s value. In more stark terms, often the â€œvalueâ€ is a binary one – in that high speed access yields a â€œyesâ€ or â€œnoâ€.
6 – If a state wants to be known as the crossroads of America and to attract local, national and international businesses â€“ and what state doesnâ€™t? â€“ even its smallest communities need to offer broadband connectivity via fiber to the home (FTTH).
Measuring Broadbandâ€™s Economic Impact – a pdf of a study from 2005
Press release from Albemarle County:
In an effort to determine how high-speed broadband Internet access might be extended to underserved parts of the County, a Broadband Task Force was established in October 2013. Among the action items recognized by the Broadband Task Force is the need to identify and analyze demand. To that end, a survey has been created for citizens to weigh-in on their broadband desires. It is critical that all county residents and business owners, particularly those in rural areas, participate in the survey in order to establish important baseline data.
The survey is available on-line at www.wired.virginia.gov/broadband/broadband-survey. For citizens with limited access to the Internet, a physical copy of this survey will be distributed at various locations around the County. More details about where to find the physical copy of the survey and how to get it back in the appropriate hands upon completion will be shared in the coming weeks. Additionally, citizens may check the speed of their current Internet connection by visiting www.albemarle.org/upload/images/webapps/broadband/.
The Task Force will be collecting and analyzing survey responses through June 2014. A findings report with next steps will be published in July 2014.
The Broadband Task Force includes representatives from the County (general government and Schools), service providers, Thomas Jefferson Planning District Commission, the University of Virginia, as well as several County residents. For more information about the Broadband Task Force, visit www.albemarle.org/broadband.