Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Broadband Internet Forums

DURHAM, N.H. -- The New Hampshire Broadband Mapping Project (NHBMP), which is managed by the University of New Hampshire's Geographically Referenced Analysis and Information Transfer (NH GRANIT) project, will host a series of public forums around the state beginning September 28 through mid-November. The informational meetings will familiarize participants with the NHBMP’s ongoing efforts to inventory and map broadband coverage available across New Hampshire, and collect important input from residents, businesses, and institutions on where broadband is and is not currently available.

The NHBMP is a coordinated, multi-agency initiative funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act through the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), and is part of a national effort to expand high-speed Internet access and adoption through improved data collection and broadband planning.

GRANIT, which is housed at the UNH Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space (EOS), serves as the statewide geographic information system (GIS) clearinghouse. In January, the U.S. Department of Commerce awarded GRANIT approximately $1.7 million to manage NHBMP, which will inventory and map current and planned broadband coverage available to the state's businesses, educators, and citizens.

"The results of the mapping activity will be an important determinant in planning for future broadband access across the state, and that access is vital for all citizens in terms of economic development, education, health care, public health and safety, and quality of life issues," says GRANIT director Fay Rubin of the Complex Systems Research Center at EOS. She adds, “We encourage citizens to join the NHBMP and provide input to this important mapping project.”

Sessions will be co-hosted by UNH, the nine regional planning commissions, and the NH Department of Resources and Economic Development. Alphabetically by town/city, they are scheduled as follows for our area:

Peterborough Monday, October 4th, 6:30-8:30 PM

Peterborough Town House
1 Grove St., Peterborough, NH 03458
Contact Michael Blair at the Southwest Region Planning
Commission (mblair@swrpc.org) for further information.

Keene Tuesday, October 12th, 6:30-8:30 PM

Heberton Hall/Keene Public Library
60 Winter St., Keene NH 03431
Contact Michael Blair at the Southwest Region Planning
Commission (mblair@swrpc.org) for further information.

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