July Infrastructure: plans and connections

Last mile, waste water, regional policy. These were the three hot topics at our July Infrastructure meeting.

OpenCape and CapeNet recently issued a press release announcing that the network now spans more than 400 miles throughout southeastern Massachusetts and Cape Cod, with high-speed links to Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard, and is now self-sustaining. 86 Community Anchor Institutions have been  connected. Several towns are considering last-mile solutions, including wi-fi networks for their business districts

The Committee was reminded of the Technology Council’s “Unwired Village”  project, which with a grant from the John Adams Institute, established free public access to wi-fi networks in the Orleans and Falmouth business districts during the 2005-2007 timeframe.

As towns work on last mile, can we help connect them to services? What are their needs, what services do they need to meet those needs? There are now more options for municipalities to find assistance in doing Last Mile.

The committee feels there may be value in inviting interested parties to a Last Mile meeting. If there is an interest, we might start looking to see where the grant money is and connecting it to organizations that fit the need.

Another place we may have input is with the Cape Cod Commission. In the past, this committee has had input on the Regional Policy Plan, which the Commission will be releasing soon, along with the Waste Water Plan.  The Committee’s input into past versions of the Regional Policy Plan has resulted in changes, such as the inclusion of telecommunications infrastructure in the planning process.

Cape Cod Young Professionals will also be joining us for the August 6th Committee Meeting, as our changing demographics become an infrastructure issue. CCYP’s Shape the Cape results were released last week. Of particular interest in their report:

“Preliminary data from the Dukakis Center report demonstrates that challenges related to mentoring, professional development, and peer network development play a pivotal role in the decision of young workers to leave our region to seek employment and launch entrepreneurial ventures elsewhere. CCYP is excited to announce the launch of the Career Connect Mentor Exchange program which will provide a supportive environment for entrepreneurs and those who are starting, changing, or advancing their careers on Cape Cod.”
Shape the Cape Summary Report

Cape & Vineyard Electric Cooperative and NSTAR are also on the schedule to join us for the September 3rd Committee Meeting.

Please note: The Infrastructure Committee now meets at 8:30am on the first Wednesday of the month. All are welcome to attend.

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