Located in rural southwest Colorado, Cortez is just 20 miles from the famous four corners of the US southwest. When incumbents were either unwilling or unable to provide modern services in the region, Cortez stepped up with a plan. This week, Cortez General Services Director Rick Smith joins us to share how they incrementally built an open access fiber network.
Cortez is one of the growing number of local governments with no electric utility that has built its own fiber network - and they didn't just stop with one. They have built both a local loop for a business district and a larger regional loop to connect anchor institutions.
The network was financed in large part with grants from the state that were matched locally. Cortez has plans to continue growing both networks to ensure area businesses and residents have access to the services they need in the modern economy.
We covered Cortez when it first launched back in 2011 - see all our coverage here. Read more about the Cortez Community Network here.
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This show is 20 minutes long and can be played below on this page or via iTunes or via the tool of your choice using this feed.
Listen to previous episodes here. You can can download this Mp3 file directly from here.
Thanks to Valley Lodge for the music, licensed using Creative Commons. The song is "Sweet Elizabeth."