April Newsline: Development Through Sewer Upgrades; Obama Proposes Infrastructure Bank and More

April 2009 Vol. 64 No. 4

Fibertech Networks to install 200 mile fiber-optic network

Fibertech Networks, a fiber-optic network company based in Rochester, NY, expects to have a 200-mile network it is building installed by June.

Fibertech Networks typically builds networks in midsize metropolitan areas but was drawn to the region by a large customer in South Jersey that it declined to identify as reported in the Philadelphia Business Journal.

The network goes as far north as Plymouth Meeting in Pennsylvania and Springside in New Jersey and connects to a 40-mile network Fibertech already has in the Wilmington area.

Fibertech has hired two people to handle sales in the region and will hire three to five more for administrative and service duties, said Dan Clifton, the company’s director of marketing and communications.

“We’re a growing company and we will grow our presence here in Philadelphia,” Clifton said.

Fibertech doesn’t offer phone service; instead, it offers data services and leases fiber to carriers, Internet service providers and organizations that want high-bandwidth connections between multiple locations.

“Our unique proposition is we build fiber directly into people’s businesses,” Clifton said.
Fibertech’s customers include large to midsize companies in a wide variety of industries, but health care, financial services and education are among its strongest.”

Obama proposes infrastructure bank

President Barack Obama’s proposed budget for fiscal 2010 includes the creation of a National Infrastructure Bank. Costing $25 billion over five years, the body would provide direct funding and co-ordination for projects.

The budget statement said, “The Budget proposes to expand and enhance existing Federal infrastructure investments through a National Infrastructure Bank designed to deliver financial resources to priority infrastructure projects of significant national or regional economic benefit.”

Originally proposed in 2007 in a bipartisan bill from senators Christopher Dodd and Chuck Hagel, the bank was intended to improve infrastructure transit systems, water infrastructure and roads and bridges in the U.S. The bill said the bank would deal with projects with a minimum value of $75 million, and would require up to $60 billion in financing, to be raised through bonds.

The bank is not intended to replace existing schemes for infrastructure funding, but will focus on schemes that will increase capacity but which do not currently receive adequate funding.