Adelaide has become the first non-US city to join the US Smart Gigabit Communities program, led by US Ignite, a non-profit organisation that “fosters the development and deployment of advanced networking applications that will profoundly change the way Americans live, work and learn.”
The government has created a web site dedicated to the Gig City Initiative: http://gigcity.com.au. It joins other new entrants to the program: Albuquerque, New Mexico; Salisbury, North Carolina; and Washington, DC
Membership of the program commits Adelaide, in partnership with US Ignite, to develop two applications or public services that require gigabit broadband services and that provide advanced technology solutions to issues faced by the community. It must also agree to share those applications with the other communities in the network.
SA Government to pump $4.65m into Gig City initiatives
The South Australian Government said it would invest $4.65 million to enable Adelaide to become a Gig City and would provide affordable 1Gbps connections to Adelaide’s innovation hubs at Tonsley, Technology Park, Techport, the Thebarton BioScience precinct, St Paul’s Creative Centre, the Majoran Co-working Space, Hub Adelaide, and the Stretton Centre.
Gig City will use the existing SABRENet optical fibre network, which is owned by the State Government and South Australia’s universities, and connects the state’s research and educational sites.
Kyam Maher, minister for manufacturing and innovation, automotive transformation and for science and information economy, said the Gig City funding was part of the State Government’s almost $80 million allocated in the recent state budget to “accelerate South Australia’s transformation to a modern, innovative economy that supports jobs for the future.”
The package of measures also includes funding for early commercialisation, a local venture capital fund, and support for the University of South Australia’s Future Industries Institute.
Maher said: “This has the potential to deliver important advances in areas such as healthcare, education, public safety, and other priority areas using advanced internet applications that are not yet available on today’s commercial internet.”
US Ignite says that, over the next five years, the ecosystem it is creating will deliver 60 next-generation applications, 200 community test beds where applications can be researched, developed, tested, refined, and deployed, and new forum for collaboration between an array of diverse partners in education and the workforce, energy, health, public safety, transportation and advance manufacturing.
The Smart Gigabit Communities Program is funded largely by the US National Science Foundation (NSF). It was announced during the launch of the Smart Cities Initiative in September 2015.