We are very excited to welcome Ann Arbor, Mich. to the Next Century Cities family! Ann Arbor has a long history of innovation, and believes that affordable and reliable broadband is essential in order to build a successful and equitable community. Mayor Christopher Taylor says of the city’s connectivity efforts, “In an environment where government is asked to do more with less, collaborating with our residents, businesses and other stakeholders is an important part in preparing for the needs of the future.”
Ann Arbor built an institutional fiber network (A2 I-NET) in 2017. Today, 35 city locations, as well as the Ann Arbor District Libraries, Ann Arbor Transportation Authority, and the Downtown Development Authority, are connected to the network. A2 I-NET includes additional fiber capacity, and dark fiber is available for community use.
The city is currently working to improve fiber infrastructure in their Tech Park in order to support smart city initiatives, boost economic development, facilitate partnerships and collaboration, and improve city services and quality of life for residents. Equity and sustainability are priorities within all of these initiatives.
When it comes to innovation, Ann Arbor’s fiber infrastructure supports an advanced connected and autonomous vehicle testing environment developed by the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute. The city is also partnering with Ford Motor Company on the City Insights Platform, which will gather data that will help planners and policymakers address mobility challenges.
Curious about Next Century Cities membership? Learn more here.