Non-profit internet provider Mozilla has chosen Eugene as its next Gigabit City. This is basically a gold star for the city’s innovations in internet technology.
The gigabit designation refers to cities with world class internet infrastructure, such as downtown Eugene’s incoming high-speed fiber optic network. Economic development planner Anne Fifield says what caught Mozilla’s attention was not just Eugene’s new fiber network, but how it’s being used to better connect the community.
"We had folks from the arts industry working with people in education working with people in workforce development. Bringing all of those people in the room together has lead to a number of really creative opportunities," says Fifield. "That's what Mozilla was interested in."
Lafayette, LA joins Eugene on the list of Gigabit Cities, which already includes Austin, Kansas City and Chattanooga. The designation comes with $150,000 in grant money to support projects that employ gigabit network technology in innovative ways. Individuals as well as non- and for-profit organizations can apply for grants early this summer.