New Fiber Optic Ring Installation Will Help Huntsville Turn Into ‘Gig City’

Cloud computing conceptResidents and local lawmakers in Huntsville have been focused on turning the area into “Gig City” for quite some time now, and it seems more likely than ever that this dream will come true.

Recently, the Huntsville Chamber of Commerce held a press conference announcing that the Mobile-based company Southern Light would be installing a fiber optic ring around the city in order to provide high-speed internet service.

The Huntsville City Council voted to give Southern Light a franchise agreement, WTVM News 9 stated, in order to give the company legal guidelines for the network’s infrastructure.

The fiber optic ring will run around the Cummings Research Park and construction will begun toward the end of 2015.

According to, Southern Light is planning to provide this service primarily for businesses located in downtown Huntsville. However, the fiber cable network is also likely to help out private residents and allow for faster download speeds.

The ring will be capable of transmitting 1,000 gigabits per second through its main line, and smaller “fiber arteries” branching off the main line will transmit data at 100 gigabits per second, Andy Newton, CEO of Southern Light, stated.

Newton has referred to the company as an “open-access provider,” explaining that any communications company can pay to use the network and that once the infrastructure has been installed, businesses and residents alike will be able to benefit from the service.

The focus on creating faster internet speeds and data networks isn’t just confined to the state of Alabama; across the country, more businesses have begun implementing new cloud-based technology in order to take advantage of big data they technically already possess. nearly 60% of businesses have stated that they plan to implement cloud software to manage big data, but many businesses have already discovered that no amount of data processing software is helpful if the network connection is too slow.

Downtown Huntsville may not be the most tech-forward place in the country yet, but with this new network infrastructure in place, it’s possible that Huntsville truly could become “Gig City” in just a few more years.

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