Community Broadband Planning Grant Surveys
The City of Belfast Broadband Committee, with assistance from its consultant, Axiom Technologies, is asking people who live or work in Belfast (or both) to fill out a brief survey. These surveys will help us to understand concerns regarding internet service, the costs of current internet service, where service gaps are present, and what needs exist regarding future connectivity.
There are two different types of surveys:
Belfast Community Internet Survey (Please fill out this survey if you live in Belfast, or if you have a home-based business in Belfast.)
Belfast Business Internet and Workforce Needs Survey (Please fill out this survey if you work at a location in Belfast that is used exclusively for business.)
(If both of these situations apply to you, we do encourage you to fill out one of each type of survey.)
If you are unable to access or fill out a survey online, you can also pick up and return a print version of the survey, at either the Office of the City Manager at Belfast City Hall (131 Church Street, Belfast), or at the Belfast Free Library (106 High Street, Belfast), during each facility's normal business hours.
We kindly request that you complete and return your survey (whether online or print version) by Friday, June 15th, 2018.
This surveying effort is being paid for by a combination of a ConnectME Authority Community Broadband Planning Grant and funds from the City of Belfast.
Internet Service Providers and Areas of Coverage
A number of companies provide internet services to at least some portion of Belfast; these include Bluestreak/UniTel, Charter Spectrum, Consolidated Communications, Exede/WildBlue, GWI, HughesNet, LCI, OTELCO, Premium Choice Broadband, and Redzone Wireless.
The ConnectME Authority's map of broadband (wired and fixed wireless) coverage in Belfast (2017.07.27 version)
shows available download and upload speed tiers on a street-by-street basis for wired and fixed wireless internet service. However, please note that this map does not show where internet service providers have their coverages within Belfast, and that this map may not reflect current coverage information. Potential customers will still need to directly communicate with an internet service provider to confirm whether or not internet service is available at their particular location.
'Three Ring Binder' Network
Maine Fiber Company was formed to oversee the construction, maintenance, and leasing of a 1,100-mile, high-capacity fiber optic network in the state of Maine, known as the 'Three Ring Binder.' T his network is a true 'dark fiber' asset and provides the fiber for telecom carriers to provide service to their customers. The Maine Fiber Company leases this fiber on an open-access, non-discriminatory basis, meaning that any responsible entity may lease fiber along the route, including any institutional customer, telecom carrier, or internet service provider, and that all users will have access at the same pricing and substantially similar terms and conditions relative to their use of the network. More than 7 miles of the network's
southern ring run through Belfast's east side and through its downtown, along portions of Searsport Avenue, Robbins Road, High Street, Church Street, and Northport Avenue, with additional spurs extending out along Belmont Avenue and Lincolnville Avenue.
Community Broadband Planning Grant
The City of Belfast was recently selected by the ConnectME Authority as a recipient of a Community Broadband Planning Grant in the amount of $15,000. The City of Belfast will be using these funds to create a Community Technology Plan. This plan will include: the defining of community broadband needs and goals; network planning and financial analysis; the assessing of municipal procedures, policies, rules, and ordinances; digital inclusion and adoption; economic impacts; and public outreach. Axiom Technologies, who has extensive experience in these planning efforts, having already partnered with over a dozen communities, regions, and counties across rural Maine, has been retained by the City to oversee the implementation of this grant. The City of Belfast will be represented in this planning effort by members of its already-established Broadband Committee.
The next important step for this planning effort, to be undertaken in the next few months, will be the distribution of surveys to both residents of Belfast and to the Belfast business community. These surveys will help to understand concerns regarding broadband, the costs of current service, where service gaps are present, and what needs exist regarding future connectivity.
Any person or entity that is interested in learning more about this broadband planning effort is encouraged to contact City of Belfast Economic Development Director Thomas Kittredge via e-mail at
or via phone at (207) 338-3370, extension 116. Information related to this broadband planning process will also be posted at this location.
City of Belfast Broadband Precertification Checklist ConnectME Authority Community Broadband Planning Grant Application