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US IGNITE TO LAUNCH NATIONWIDE NETWORK OF ULTRA-HIGH SPEED “LIVING LABS”

$6 Million in funding from National Science Foundation Project to jumpstart a critical mass of smart city gigabit applications in 15 communities

September 14, 2015 (Washington, DC) — Today, US Ignite is excited to announce that it has been awarded a $6 million dollar grant from the National Science Foundation to build a living lab of testbeds for smart gigabit applications in 15 communities throughout the country. This announcement was made as part of a White House event, at which the Obama Administration made several commitments to support “Smart Cities.”

The end result of the grant will be a growing number of communities nationwide participating in a “smart city app store” for interoperable and interconnected smart gigabit community applications addressing national priorities.

The three year, public-private project will knit together researchers, citizens, community organizations, technology companies, entrepreneurs, academics and federal, state and local governments to begin to build the next generation of the Internet in the United States. Participating communities include: Burlington, VT; Chattanooga, TN; Cleveland, OH; Flint, MI; Kansas City, KS MO; Madison, WI; the North Carolina Next Generation Network (NCNGN); Richardson, TX; Utah Wasatch Front cities including Salt Lake City and Provo, UT; Lafayette, LA; Urbana-Champaign, IL; and Austin, TX.

William Wallace, Executive Director of US Ignite noted, “By accelerating the development of next-generation applications, we are working to ignite innovation and new approaches to solving some of society’s most vexing problems and, in the process, enriching our communities and our economy. Building a critical mass of communities with next-generation Internet capabilities will have ripple effects: if networks are fast, reliable and widely available, companies produce more capable applications to run on those networks, which in turn brings new users online and increases use among those who already subscribe to broadband services.” US Ignite Principal Investigator Glenn Ricart adds that “many smart city applications are enabled by the kinds of advanced technology and civic partnerships that this grant will build in US Ignite Smart Gigabit Communities.”

The award announced today will continue and expand the activities of US Ignite which has organized local communities and assisted in building over 100 next-generation applications over the past 3 years. Each of these US Ignite communities will receive access to a low-latency and ultra-fast network with locavore (local cloud) computing and storage capabilities that will support highly interactive and visually immersive experiences not possible on today’s commercial Internet. Communities will also receive technical assistance from US Ignite staff and partners in designing and developing applications to take advantage of the new network connections including access to fund accelerators and technical staff.

As part of their participation, cities will fund and build two next-generation applications that will be shared among the larger, nationwide ecosystem of gigabit cities. The awards were granted to communities with strong support from local government, colleges and universities, non-profits, internet service providers and community anchor institution.

Selected Statements from US Ignite Project Participants

HP, General Manager Public Sector Rob Courtney

“HP is delighted to not only be part of the vision and sponsorship, but as the fabric for the next phase of rolls out in the first 15 cities. This infrastructure will allow the US Ignite vision to become a reality for the new generation of applications running on the next generation Internet.”

Internet2 President and CEO David Lambert

“The Internet2 community has continually been on the forefront of advanced networking capabilities and applications. We are thrilled to have the opportunity to work with US Ignite and the Sustainable Ecosystem of Smart Cities project on this grant to facilitate the deployment and adoption of gigabit applications among community anchor institutions in smart cities across the US and Internet2 connected community anchor institutions.”

CEO of OneCommunity Lev Gonick

“We are excited that 14 other cities are joining Cleveland as part of the US Ignite smart cities initiative catalyzing next generation applications. We believe that one of the big bets for Cleveland, the Great Lakes region, and the country as a whole is designing a robust data science eco-system. We are focused on leveraging city partners in the US Ignite smart cities coalition to advance computation literacy education, collaboration, and experiential learning in ways that would have been unimaginable without these next generation network services.”

Chief Marketing Officer for Juniper Networks Mike Marcellin

“Helping connect communities across the country with innovative, high-performance networks is core to our mission at Juniper Networks and we are proud to be a founding sponsor of US Ignite. This initiative to build and connect Gigabit networks will enable cutting-edge, life-changing applications for people nationwide and we are excited to be a part of it.”

CIO for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and UC2B Board Member Mark Henderson

“UC2B and the University communities are poised to bring strong next-generation application development to support vulnerable populations as they become connected to broadband through the #ConnectHome initiative. Access to next generation applications around education, healthcare, economic advancement, and green energy will elevate this community and will broaden the reach of next-generation knowledge.”

Professor and Director of the Center for Digital Inclusion at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and UC2B Board Vice Chair Dr. Jon Gant

“The timing of the US Ignite NSF grant is perfect for UC2B and our partner cities. As any of the gig fiber projects nationally will share, it takes time to build a new network from scratch. For UC2B we built the network and connected community anchor institutions and low-income households in the first phase with federal funding through BTOP. We are now working through a public private partnership with ITV-3 to expand service to the other 90% of our community. And it’s exciting that in parallel the University of Illinois and the Urbana-Champaign private sector and high-tech community now have funding through US Ignite to continue to broaden opportunities for new research, development and community engagement to build next generation applications focused on public benefit.”

UC2B Not-For-Profit Board Chair Brandon Bowersox-Johnson

“By being part of this network of 15 smart cities around the U.S., our community will have the opportunity to host research projects using a faster, next-generation network. This new connectivity makes possible new Internet applications that are visually immersive and interactive. I am excited to see how our community takes advantage of this opportunity.”

City of Urbana Mayor Laurel Prussing

“Urbana is delighted and honored to join the 15 American smart cities chosen to host research projects with our new high-speed internet system. This new federal grant once again demonstrates the power of cooperation between the University of Illinois and the cities of Urbana and Champaign.”

Executive Vice President at Viavi Solutions and Chair of the Board of US Ignite Sue Spradley

“Viavi Solutions is proud to be a part of the US Ignite program – we commend the organization and other program contributors for helping play a role providing quality, high-speed future communications networks and applications,” said,. “Viavi is honored to offer network expertise and solutions to maintain the critical virtualized networks that will support this next phase of the exciting Sustainable Smart Cities Project.”

Managing Director of KC Digital Drive Aaron Deacon

“US Ignite has been an invaluable partner in bringing national resources and top-notch technical expertise to our work in Kansas City the past several years, working to bridge the gap between next generation technology like gigabit fiber and smart city sensors and the human impact we want to see in our cities. We’re looking forward to continuing this network partnership over the coming years and grateful to the National Science Foundation for continuing to support this work.”

Kettering University President Dr. Robert K. McMahan

“The ultra high-speed network connectivity made possible through our partnership with U.S. Ignite provides us with a tremendous platform for collaboration with existing institutions within our city as well as with partner organizations around the world. Building on this platform, Kettering University now spearheads a local partnership with local Universities and colleges as well as with three major medical centers. This partnership is designed to permit students, faculty, clinicians, and researchers across our combined programs to collaborate with colleagues from around the country and to have direct access to new tools to provide members of our community with exceptional patient care. Additionally, our partnership with U.S. Ignite gives us the ability to provide the city of Flint with layered tools to improve community safety and quality of life. These collaborations, tools, and technologies, harnessed in partnership with members of Flint’s broader higher education, healthcare and research community, make for a very bright future here – and one without limits.”

Chair of the North Carolina Next Generation Networks (NCNGN) Initiative and Vice President of Information Technology and CIO at Duke University Tracy Futhey

“We are pleased to be included in US Ignite’s grant and look forward to helping to shape how our communities can collaborate in the use of advanced networks. It’s exciting to be positioned to move beyond the building of gigabit networks and toward the actual development of tomorrow’s groundbreaking applications. The grant will allow each gigabit community to build on the successes of our gigabit neighbors, advancing our communities and society.”

Selected Statements from US Ignite Project Participants

Internet2 President and CEO David Lambert

“The Internet2 community has continually been on the forefront of advanced networking capabilities and applications. We are thrilled to have the opportunity to work with US Ignite and the Sustainable Ecosystem of Smart Cities project on this grant to facilitate the deployment and adoption of gigabit applications among community anchor institutions in smart cities across the US and Internet2 connected community anchor institutions.”

CEO of OneCommunity Lev Gonick

“We are excited that 14 other cities are joining Cleveland as part of the US Ignite smart cities initiative catalyzing next generation applications. We believe that one of the big bets for Cleveland, the Great Lakes region, and the country as a whole is designing a robust data science eco-system. We are focused on leveraging city partners in the US Ignite smart cities coalition to advance computation literacy education, collaboration, and experiential learning in ways that would have been unimaginable without these next generation network services.”

Chief Marketing Officer for Juniper Networks Mike Marcellin

“Helping connect communities across the country with innovative, high-performance networks is core to our mission at Juniper Networks and we are proud to be a founding sponsor of US Ignite. This initiative to build and connect Gigabit networks will enable cutting-edge, life-changing applications for people nationwide and we are excited to be a part of it.”

CIO for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and UC2B Board Member Mark Henderson

“UC2B and the University communities are poised to bring strong next-generation application development to support vulnerable populations as they become connected to broadband through the #ConnectHome initiative. Access to next generation applications around education, healthcare, economic advancement, and green energy will elevate this community and will broaden the reach of next-generation knowledge.”

Professor and Director of the Center for Digital Inclusion at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and UC2B Board Vice Chair Dr. Jon Gant

“The timing of the US Ignite NSF grant is perfect for UC2B and our partner cities. As any of the gig fiber projects nationally will share, it takes time to build a new network from scratch. For UC2B we built the network and connected community anchor institutions and low-income households in the first phase with federal funding through BTOP. We are now working through a public private partnership with ITV-3 to expand service to the other 90% of our community. And it’s exciting that in parallel the University of Illinois and the Urbana-Champaign private sector and high-tech community now have funding through US Ignite to continue to broaden opportunities for new research, development and community engagement to build next generation applications focused on public benefit.”

UC2B Not-For-Profit Board ChairBrandon Bowersox-Johnson

“By being part of this network of 15 smart cities around the U.S., our community will have the opportunity to host research projects using a faster, next-generation network. This new connectivity makes possible new Internet applications that are visually immersive and interactive. I am excited to see how our community takes advantage of this opportunity.”

City of Urbana Mayor Laurel Prussing

“Urbana is delighted and honored to join the 15 American smart cities chosen to host research projects with our new high-speed internet system. This new federal grant once again demonstrates the power of cooperation between the University of Illinois and the cities of Urbana and Champaign.”

Executive Vice President at Viavi Solutions and Chair of the Board of US Ignite Sue Spradley

“Viavi Solutions is proud to be a part of the US Ignite program – we commend the organization and other program contributors for helping play a role providing quality, high-speed future communications networks and applications,” said,. “Viavi is honored to offer network expertise and solutions to maintain the critical virtualized networks that will support this next phase of the exciting Sustainable Smart Cities Project.”

Managing Director of KC Digital Drive Aaron Deacon

“US Ignite has been an invaluable partner in bringing national resources and top-notch technical expertise to our work in Kansas City the past several years, working to bridge the gap between next generation technology like gigabit fiber and smart city sensors and the human impact we want to see in our cities. We’re looking forward to continuing this network partnership over the coming years and grateful to the National Science Foundation for continuing to support this work.”

Kettering University President Dr. Robert K. McMahan

“The ultra high-speed network connectivity made possible through our partnership with U.S. Ignite provides us with a tremendous platform for collaboration with existing institutions within our city as well as with partner organizations around the world. Building on this platform, Kettering University now spearheads a local partnership with local Universities and colleges as well as with three major medical centers. This partnership is designed to permit students, faculty, clinicians, and researchers across our combined programs to collaborate with colleagues from around the country and to have direct access to new tools to provide members of our community with exceptional patient care. Additionally, our partnership with U.S. Ignite gives us the ability to provide the city of Flint with layered tools to improve community safety and quality of life. These collaborations, tools, and technologies, harnessed in partnership with members of Flint’s broader higher education, healthcare and research community, make for a very bright future here – and one without limits.”

Chair of the North Carolina Next Generation Networks (NCNGN) Initiative and Vice President of Information Technology and CIO at Duke University Tracy Futhey

“We are pleased to be included in US Ignite’s grant and look forward to helping to shape how our communities can collaborate in the use of advanced networks. It’s exciting to be positioned to move beyond the building of gigabit networks and toward the actual development of tomorrow’s groundbreaking applications. The grant will allow each gigabit community to build on the successes of our gigabit neighbors, advancing our communities and society.”