Mayor Howard Wiggs
On Lakeland: “Lakeland must become a Gigabit City to accomplish our established Vision, Mission and Goals. Sustainable economic development, growth, opportunity and innovation are dependent on affordable high speed internet access – this is essential for Lakeland to become a “World Class Community”. City vision and leadership will help ensure our community has the broadband infrastructure necessary to meet our businesses and citizens growing demand for high speed access. We will engage local business leaders and service providers and leverage existing City assets for the greatest benefit to our citizens and community business partners.”
On Next Century Cities: “We believe that for Lakeland to be successful our region and our country must also be successful. We believe that Broadband infrastructure is critically important and it must be a national concern. It will be through the efforts of Next Century Cities and other concerned organizations that these issues will be properly addressed by both government and business.”
What Lakeland is up to: The City of Lakeland currently owns and manages over 330 sheath miles of fiber which is used primarily by the Electric Utility to manage the electric grid and by other Departments in the City for business communications. We also currently lease some dark fiber which provides revenue for the City. It is our desire to utilize City resources to the greatest benefit of our Citizens and our local businesses. Therefore a selected consultant will be engaged to help the City create a Strategic Broadband Plan. The plan will map the future of this important fiber infrastructure and will consider how all aspects of the Lakeland plan integrate with the broader Polk County Plan and other regional plans. It is our desire to be a progressive local and regional partnership leader ensuring our communities have the required Broadband infrastructure necessary to meet the needs for economic growth and sustainability.