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pnh102
Reptiles Are Cuddly And Pretty
Premium
join:2002-05-02
Mount Airy, MD

WTF Is Kansas City's Problem

quote:
What’s more, the city and county governments are one, and that same Unified Government of Wyandotte County owns the Kansas City Board of Public Utilities and its utility poles. That figured to make negotiations over installing Google’s fiber easier.

Now it turns out that differences over where and how to hang wires on those poles, and what fees or installation costs may be required, have created a troublesome bump in plans to launch the project at “Google speed.”
KC (both of them) should be moving heaven and earth to make it as easy as possible for Google to do this! But as always, the right palms aren't being greased and the government, once again, is blocking the way for next generation broadband.

Too bad an enterprising municipality isn't saying "Hey Google! Come here, you can install broadband and we won't get up your asses about it!"
--
"Net Neutrality" zealots - the people you can thank for your capped Internet service.


FFH5
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5

1 recommendation

I find it funny that Google is now seeing what existing cable & telco companies have had to deal with for years when dealing with local government. They aren't used to having to payoff/bribe local officials to get anything done.

Austinloop

join:2001-08-19
Austin, TX
kudos:1
reply to pnh102
After reading thru the Kansas City Star, the main problem is hanging google's cable in the 40 inch zone, normally reserved for power.

Otherwise, cable tv and telephone have to lower their attachments, which takes time and costs money, which neither will do for free. Hanging cable in the 40 inch zone can be very risky from a safety point of view.

To really mess up the install, it will take just one lineman contacting the 7.2 kv, or higher primary lines to show the folly of hanging cable in the power zone.


aztecnology
O Rly?
Premium
join:2003-02-12
Murrieta, CA
reply to FFH5
said by FFH5:

I find it funny that Google is now seeing what existing cable & telco companies have had to deal with for years when dealing with local government. They aren't used to having to payoff/bribe local officials to get anything done.

Exactly. Which is why this will be the goog's one and only beta network...
--
.:|:. aztec being aztec...™


pnh102
Reptiles Are Cuddly And Pretty
Premium
join:2002-05-02
Mount Airy, MD
reply to Austinloop
said by Austinloop:

After reading thru the Kansas City Star, the main problem is hanging google's cable in the 40 inch zone, normally reserved for power.

Otherwise, cable tv and telephone have to lower their attachments, which takes time and costs money, which neither will do for free. Hanging cable in the 40 inch zone can be very risky from a safety point of view.

To really mess up the install, it will take just one lineman contacting the 7.2 kv, or higher primary lines to show the folly of hanging cable in the power zone.

Sounds like Google should have picked a city that had less crowded utility poles, or which would be more proactive in working towards solving the problem.

It is Google (or any other provider) for that matter that holds all the cards here. I would hope that both KCs understand this and plan accordingly. Look at what happened to Boston and other parts of Massachusetts, or the city of Buffalo NY when they made life difficult for Verizon when they wanted to install FIOS. The local governments there got a big fat "F-U" from Verizon, and the people there cannot get FIOS.
--
"Net Neutrality" zealots - the people you can thank for your capped Internet service.

moonpuppy

join:2000-08-21
Glen Burnie, MD

1 recommendation

said by pnh102:

Sounds like Google should have picked a city that had less crowded utility poles, or which would be more proactive in working towards solving the problem.

It is Google (or any other provider) for that matter that holds all the cards here. I would hope that both KCs understand this and plan accordingly. Look at what happened to Boston and other parts of Massachusetts, or the city of Buffalo NY when they made life difficult for Verizon when they wanted to install FIOS. The local governments there got a big fat "F-U" from Verizon, and the people there cannot get FIOS.

Oh, I get KC was all for this and even rolled out the red carpet.....until the rubber hit the road and now they are looking for an extra payday.

If Google gets held up by the local governments, then they would be wise to take their ball and go home and leave a note as to why they left including naming names and laying blame.

Austinloop

join:2001-08-19
Austin, TX
kudos:1
reply to pnh102
You will be hard pressed to find any city with uncrowded utility poles. When I was a telco engineer, I received requests for attachment and moving plant to allow attachment on a weekly basis, all of which required money from the entity wanting attachment.

It is a dollar thing, you want me to move my cable attachment down to accommodate your attachment, it will cost x dollars per pole, then multiply that by 2 or 3 depending if cable tv has attachments, or someone else has attachments also.

I, frankly, don't see this as the city giving google a hard time, but trying to maintain the 40 inch electrical clearance, to avoid safety issues.

What I don't understand is why google didn't see this, didn't they field survey the cities?

axus

join:2001-06-18
Washington, DC
Reviews:
·Comcast
reply to pnh102
To have a level playing field, Google should not be treated any differently than AT&T/Bell or the power company using these poles.

So, the only question is, is Google being treated unfairly compared to others? Surely some standards need to be applied to use of utility poles. Telco and power and Google all would benefit from an easier process.

w4ncr

join:2000-10-27
reply to Austinloop
Sometime in the future power telecom companies will pay a company to maintain utility poles and the underground systems ride away for industry there are plenty of ways to make money!

Austinloop

join:2001-08-19
Austin, TX
kudos:1
Regardless of who maintains the utility poles, someone will have to pay to have existing attachments changed, so that really changes nothing concerning attachments in the 40 inch safety zone.


aztecnology
O Rly?
Premium
join:2003-02-12
Murrieta, CA
reply to aztecnology
said by aztecnology:

Exactly. Which is why this will be the goog's one and only beta network...

For posterity...
"In the end, google will realize that they don't want to operate a network, will have spent a bunch of time and money to realize they have created just a bigger lab/network than what they started in palo alto. Eventually some local isp will likely take over..."

»Re: Public is expecting multiple service providers ....
--
.:|:. aztec being aztec...™


pnh102
Reptiles Are Cuddly And Pretty
Premium
join:2002-05-02
Mount Airy, MD
reply to Austinloop
I'm not disputing the safety aspects of this. I am simply saying that it is imperative that both cities come up with a solution that addresses these concerns.
--
"Net Neutrality" zealots - the people you can thank for your capped Internet service.


pnh102
Reptiles Are Cuddly And Pretty
Premium
join:2002-05-02
Mount Airy, MD
reply to axus
said by axus:

To have a level playing field, Google should not be treated any differently than AT&T/Bell or the power company using these poles.

Do people want a level playing field, or do they want next generation broadband?

Simply telling Google, and by extension any future ISPs, "no", is not the solution.
--
"Net Neutrality" zealots - the people you can thank for your capped Internet service.

Austinloop

join:2001-08-19
Austin, TX
kudos:1
reply to pnh102
pnh, unfortunately, the solution involves having other utilities move their attachments to make room for google. That costs money, are you saying that the other utilities should move just as a favor to google.

I don't know how much experience you have with utility outside plant, but safety is the #1 priority, hence the 40 inch zone. Perhaps if the municipalities would reimburse the existing utilities to move their attachments, google could get it for free.

As I said earlier, google is obviously whining because they failed to do a complete field survey to determine all the problems. Incidentally, this clearance issue is normally observable from the ground without a lot of high tech equipment.

My sympathy for google is extremely limited.


tshirt
Premium,MVM
join:2004-07-11
Snohomish, WA
kudos:5
Reviews:
·Comcast
reply to pnh102
So who do you believe should pay the cost of improvements to the electrical plant/poles so that google can hang fiber in a safe and legal manner?
residents of KC have paid for poles adequate for power and to carry telephone and cable lines. In return the telco and cableco pay a per pole attachment fee to payback the extra cost of the larger poles required to hold the weight/stresses of the extra layers of wiring. The Idea being that the electrical customers will never pay more then the cost of poles if the carried ONLY the electrical lines.
If one of the users causes the poles to be changed/upgraded to a bigger size than they should pay the additional cost plus the remainder of the unamortized life (about 40 years total) of the existing poles either directly or through a higher per pole annual fee.
typical wooden poles cost between $3,000 and $13000 a piece installed (3 phase power plus a telco and cable layer would require a 36-44 foot pole-- in the $11k range PER POLE plus regular maintaince, insurance (drunks/storms/ other acts of god) add 2 feet for a new layer of fiber/cable/copper/any new overbuilder must pay that cost.
Google doesn't get a free ride.


aztecnology
O Rly?
Premium
join:2003-02-12
Murrieta, CA
reply to pnh102
said by pnh102:

said by axus:

To have a level playing field, Google should not be treated any differently than AT&T/Bell or the power company using these poles.

Do people want a level playing field, or do they want next generation broadband?

If it were that cheap and easy the cablecos and telcos would have every square inch of the country covered. But its not so its not...
--
.:|:. aztec being aztec...™


ArrayList
netbus developer
Premium
join:2005-03-19
Brighton, MA
Reviews:
·RCN CABLE
·Comcast
reply to tshirt
said by tshirt:

So who do you believe should pay the cost of improvements to the electrical plant/poles so that google can hang fiber in a safe and legal manner?

the residents of KC should. after all, they wanted Google to come in the first place.

if not, then Google should scrub the whole thing and make sure the world knows why they did it.


tshirt
Premium,MVM
join:2004-07-11
Snohomish, WA
kudos:5
Reviews:
·Comcast

1 edit

1 recommendation

All the residents?
even those that don't want/can't afford more service than they already have?
So you're are saying any large corporation can come to YOUR town, hype something THEY(and some residents) think is important (even though Google says this is just an experiment) and then force the costs onto the city/taxpayers/residents?
Is that really what you want?
Just because you like the idea of FTTH, do you really want it(or anything else) in the way that implies?


insomniac84

join:2002-01-03
Schererville, IN
reply to tshirt
said by tshirt:

So who do you believe should pay the cost of improvements to the electrical plant/poles so that google can hang fiber in a safe and legal manner?

Google pays for all installation costs. It appears attachment fees are some kind of one time fee the owner of the pole(electric company) charges separate from the cost of installing the cable.


dvd536
as Mr. Pink as they come
Premium
join:2001-04-27
Phoenix, AZ
kudos:4
said by insomniac84:

said by tshirt:

So who do you believe should pay the cost of improvements to the electrical plant/poles so that google can hang fiber in a safe and legal manner?

Google pays for all installation costs. It appears attachment fees are some kind of one time fee the owner of the pole(electric company) charges separate from the cost of installing the cable.

I'm pretty sure RoW pole fees are monthly.
--
Oh YES! let me drop everything i'm doing regardless of who it affects to deal with your petty little problem!


LazMan
Premium
join:2003-03-26
canada
said by dvd536:

said by insomniac84:

said by tshirt:

So who do you believe should pay the cost of improvements to the electrical plant/poles so that google can hang fiber in a safe and legal manner?

Google pays for all installation costs. It appears attachment fees are some kind of one time fee the owner of the pole(electric company) charges separate from the cost of installing the cable.

I'm pretty sure RoW pole fees are monthly.

Typically, there are two fees - the "Make-ready" or installation/attachement fees; which is a one-time charge at installation, and covers attaching to the pole, and any other charges required (adding guys, re-arrangments, etc).

There are also RoW or SSA (shared-service agreement) fees, which are a fixed monthly, recurring fee.

ALSO, it's pretty common for every "tennant" on the pole to pay a percentage of repairs/relocations, should a pole be damaged, or need to be relocated for roadwork, etc.

To me, it sounds like Google didn't understand the business they were getting into... Make-ready charges are common, and just part of doing utility construction on a shared structure.

This is all seperate from the actual construction charges, that the contractor charges for supplying and placing the cable, strand, lashing, etc...


tshirt
Premium,MVM
join:2004-07-11
Snohomish, WA
kudos:5
Reviews:
·Comcast
reply to dvd536
They may pay monthly but most places they are calculated on an annual basis. (remember this is a long term agreement) and some pole owners are considering/have added a sustantial deposit/bonding fee, after they saw the costs of removing abandoned pole mounted equipment (some failed muni and other mesh wifi left rate payers with big bills in assorted cities)

jophan
Premium
join:2009-07-12
Jenkintown, PA
reply to dvd536
Monthly attachment fees pay for the pole itself: depreciation, property taxes, maintenance (like tree trimming, safety inspections), a return on investment to the shareholders and the taxes on that return. If the power company owns the pole, the telephone and cable companies pay the same attachment fee, and vice versa.

I worked in telephone engineering when cable came into our area. Every pole had to be manually inspected and hundreds of them were replaced with taller ones to provide extra attachment spaces at the cable companies' expense. You can't compromise the clearances, from the lowest cable to the ground and from the highest to the lowest electric attachment.

One option is to "wrap" the pole, putting attachments on both the road and field sides, but electric doesn't like that because it makes it hard for technicians to climb above them.
Expand your moderator at work

Austinloop

join:2001-08-19
Austin, TX
kudos:1
reply to jophan

Re: WTF Is Kansas City's Problem

When I was in telco engineering, wrapping the pole was an excellent way to get a visit in your office by the splicing and placing foreman questioning your engineer performance in language not suitable for mixed company.

elray

join:2000-12-16
Santa Monica, CA
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
·EarthLink

2 edits
reply to Austinloop
said by Austinloop:

You will be hard pressed to find any city with uncrowded utility poles.

...

I, frankly, don't see this as the city giving google a hard time, but trying to maintain the 40 inch electrical clearance, to avoid safety issues.

What I don't understand is why google didn't see this, didn't they field survey the cities?

Google saw this, as you suggest, in every city. They didn't care.

Google Fiber Initiative is a social statement by a pair of Billionaires - presumably ready to back the project with megabucks, regardless of the bumps (and delays) in the road. As usual, they still think they're entitled.

If it takes an extra year, so be it.

moonpuppy

join:2000-08-21
Glen Burnie, MD
reply to ArrayList
said by ArrayList:

the residents of KC should. after all, they wanted Google to come in the first place.

if not, then Google should scrub the whole thing and make sure the world knows why they did it.

Exactly. They want Google to pay for it all? Then Google can go find another place more accommodating and leave KC to cry over it.


rchandra
Stargate Universe fan
Premium
join:2000-11-09
14225-2105
reply to pnh102
Interestingly enough, I can get FiOS Internet, FiOS phone service, but I cannot get FiOS TV. Thanks a lot, Cheektowaga (which is just east of Buffalo). Unless explained to me otherwise, I'll have to assume it's you who are dragging your collective and proverbial feet. I've been here a little over 3.25 years, and the Inet/phone/no TV has always been the case. Other areas around here, such as Kenmore and Tonawanda I hear-tell, can get FiOS TV. So I'm not so sure it's some technical limitation, it's just government limitation.

So....at least for the moment, I'm a TWC HSO ("Road Runner") and TV customer.
--
English is a difficult enough language to interpret correctly when its rules are followed, let alone when a writer chooses not to follow those rules.

Jeopardy! replies and randomcaps REALLY suck!


rchandra
Stargate Universe fan
Premium
join:2000-11-09
14225-2105
reply to Austinloop
I dunno quite what it's like in other areas, but here telephone and FiOS are the lowest (basically, FiOS was simply run along with phone cables which have been there for decades), and some nominal distance above that (certainly much less than 40 inches), there's TWC. There's wayyyy more than 40 inches between TWC and power of any sort.

As someone intimately familiar with outside plant, could you please explain the 40 inch zone? On first reading, it seems like this would be a minimum spacing from power. This would imply Google (or any other entity for that matter) could just hang their cables below everyone else, within some practical limit of course to prevent deter tampering.
--
English is a difficult enough language to interpret correctly when its rules are followed, let alone when a writer chooses not to follow those rules.

Jeopardy! replies and randomcaps REALLY suck!

Austinloop

join:2001-08-19
Austin, TX
kudos:1
Essentially, the 40 inch zone is so you don't stick your head, tools into the high voltage primary power and become a statistic.

As for just hanging cables anywhere on the pole, there are specified clearances between the bottom cable and driveways, roads, etc., hanging one's cable too low provides the opportunity for semi tractor trailers, garbage trucks with their looks exended, etc. tear down the cable, and possibly damage poles. Normally cables belonging to one utility will be run together, with limited, if any separation, in fact the cables may be lashed together to a single messenger strand. This is very prevalent around here where TWC will have several cables, both fiber optic and coaxial.

The bottom utility is normally the telco and the next is cable tv.

In your case, you said that there appears to be way more space above TWC and power than 40 inches. In that case, google is perfectly free to hang their cable there, providing they have made arrangements for attachment fees, etc.

Bearing in mind if 40 inches is all that separates the top utility from the power and the bottom utility just meets code clearance requirements, then whoever wants to add attachments will be paying the pole owner for a new pole and all labor required to remove the attachments from the old pole and attach to the new pole, and those are not insignificant costs.