No Fiber in Mountain View an Internet Desert

General discussions and other topics.
21 posts Page 2 of 3
by lennysiegel » Tue Feb 13, 2024 9:03 pm
I queried the city of Mountain View, and they seem more optimistic than your message suggested.

"Dear Lenny Siegel,
Your message regarding Sonic fiber-optic has been forwarded to me for a response on behalf of Mayor Showalter and Councilmembers Hicks, Ramirez, and Ramos, who are blind copied on this response.
For clarification, the City is allowing new communications infrastructure, including facilities by Sonic. City staff has been working with Sonic representatives on a new agreement to allow Sonic to install their fiber facilities in the right-of-way. We have had workload constraints with returning our comments to Sonic on the last terms of the agreement, but staff is working on this now in order to finalize the agreement, which will then allow Sonic to process permits for installation of fiber infrastructure.

Ed Arango
Acting Public Works Director
City of Mountain View
650-903-6311"

As I wrote earlier, I'm willing to drum up interest for the service. Remember, I already have Sonic Fusion service for two landlines, "high-speed" Internet, and discussion lists. But I have a few questions:
1) In general, will a residence served by utility poles be likely to be eligible for a fiber-optic connection?
2) Will phone service be available through the fibers?
3) I have an old, under-counter kitchen TV that only connects via Coax cable? Will that work on fiber-optics?
4) Will cable news and sports be accessible on the new Sonic system?
by lennysiegel » Thu Feb 15, 2024 10:27 am
Can someone respond to my last message? I recommend Sonic because real people respond quickly when I contact you. What is happening now?
by virtualmike » Fri Feb 16, 2024 5:02 pm
While the forum is a support venue, it's not the priority support venue. Sonic staff members do check in as time permits, but there's no guarantee.

Perhaps email the City's response to support@sonic.net to get it in front of someone sooner?
by dane » Fri Feb 16, 2024 7:45 pm
lennysiegel wrote: Thu Feb 15, 2024 10:27 am Can someone respond to my last message? I recommend Sonic because real people respond quickly when I contact you. What is happening now?
Sorry, I was on vacation this week - and the build team doesn’t read forums much, and the support team won’t know a lot about project status details at this sort of level.

I’ll check with the build coordination team and project manager on this project. Currently we have the project filed as “on hold” due to City issues, but I’m going to have to run down the specifics next week.

-Dane
Dane Jasper
Sonic
by rbd » Tue Feb 20, 2024 9:31 am
lennysiegel wrote: Tue Feb 13, 2024 9:03 pm 3) I have an old, under-counter kitchen TV that only connects via Coax cable? Will that work on fiber-optics?
4) Will cable news and sports be accessible on the new Sonic system?
Just answering the TV questions as a bystander with no official connection to Sonic — my understanding is that Sonic do not provide any TV service themselves, and to get the equivalent of "traditional" cable TV you will need an "over the top" (OTT) service such as YouTube TV or Sling that streams TV (including live local channels) via your Internet connection. These services can be watched with a streaming device such as a Roku or Chromecast, which usually connect to your home internet via WiFI or Ethernet and to your TV via HDMI. However there are cheap HDMI to coax adapters that would let you stream to your old TV as well.
by rbd » Fri Feb 23, 2024 11:50 am
dane wrote: Fri Feb 16, 2024 7:45 pm I’ll check with the build coordination team and project manager on this project. Currently we have the project filed as “on hold” due to City issues, but I’m going to have to run down the specifics next week.
Hi, did you get a chance to get an update? Sounds as if both Sonic and the city of Mountain View would like to get this done, so I hope we're not stuck with both sides waiting for the other side.
by lennysiegel » Fri Feb 23, 2024 12:22 pm
I'm waiting to hear from Sonic whether they agree that things are moving forward with the city. It seems that the right hand there doesn't know what the left hand is doing.

Obviously, despite significant interest among potential Mountain View customers, Sonic is feeling no urgency to bring fiber to our city.
by dane » Fri Feb 23, 2024 12:44 pm
Yes, unfortunately the City of Mountain View “allows” construction of fiber, but not the placement of safety bypass poles. Because there are 112 unsafe poles there today, this policy effectively stops any deployment of new fiber by Sonic.

The City requires instead that we wait until PG&E replaces or repairs the poles, which could happen any number of years in the future. And we won’t be unformed if and when that finally does occur, PG&E doesn’t notify anyone who has been “waiting” because nobody is supposed to wait, the standard process is to set temporary safety bypass poles until PG&E fixes theirs. The irony is that setting a temporary pole starts a shot clock for resolving the safety issue, versus denying us which means there is no deadline for resolving the existing safety issues there. Wear a hard-hat when you walk your dog, I suppose! ;)

Sorry for the unfortunate news.

We are working now the cut down the project to a smaller segment of the City, in hopes we can at least build some portion of it where the poles are safe.
Dane Jasper
Sonic
by fmc » Fri Feb 23, 2024 5:37 pm
Is there some reason Sonic can't set temporary safety bypass poles when the unsafe poles are in the way of stringing fiber?
by dane » Fri Feb 23, 2024 7:06 pm
fmc wrote: Fri Feb 23, 2024 5:37 pm Is there some reason Sonic can't set temporary safety bypass poles when the unsafe poles are in the way of stringing fiber?
That’s the normal process, and it is a routine and essential part of aerial construction. It’s set out as part of the CPUC’s standards under General Order 95, aerial utility line construction. Because at any point in time there will by a small percentage of poles that are unsafe, and the CPUC doesn’t of course allow additional new load to be added to an unsafe pole. And because a “lead”, or sequence of poles is all a single engineered structure, a single bad pole among hundreds would stop a project, if a safety bypass pole cannot be used. Placement of the temporary pole triggers a shot clock for PG&E to repair the unsafe pole.

But a number of cities have recently realized that they can block competitive fiber broadband deployment by disallowing the placement of temporary safety poles. The motive for this remains unclear to me, the only explanation that I’ve heard being aesthetic concerns about the temporary pole.

We are engaged in advocacy with various cities to try to get past this new issue, but many have dug in. This and related City permit issues has been the leading cause of delays and totally stalled projects over the last eighteen months.
Dane Jasper
Sonic
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