The state has awarded the first funds to create high-speed broadband networks across Illinois communities. The state awarded $2 million in capital funding to establish a broadband and wireless network in a Chicago neighborhood, and $1 million to help fund Aurora’s fiber optic network. Additional recipient communities will be announced in the coming months.
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The University of Chicago will be working with the Woodlawn neighborhood in Chicago, near the university, in getting their system in place. The hope is to see some of the service operational by March or April next year. The Illinois Gigabit Communities Challenge advances state efforts to encourage broadband infrastructure in every area of Illinois. Since 2010 the state has been making a serious effort to lay 4,000 miles of new fiber optic cable to develop statewide high-speed internet service.