Comcast Business Extends Fiber Network in Borough of State College, Pennsylvania

State College, PA

Seven-site ethernet network service helps improve community development and resident services in Happy Valley, including neighboring townships of Ferguson, Patton and College.

Comcast Business today announced that the Borough of State College, Pennsylvania is using its Ethernet services to improve internal collaboration and data backup efforts. These services will also bring enhanced network capacity to the townships of Ferguson, Patton and College, the County’s 911 Center, as well as the Centre Region Council of Governments and the community’s public transportation agency. By linking these organizations and local governments to each other, this comprehensive meshed Ethernet Network Service will help support public safety, regional development planning efforts and provide better community services to more than 90,000 residents.

Best known as home to Penn State University, the Borough of State College, through its IT Division, works closely with many local organizations and neighboring townships to make sure they can reliably offer innovative and economical services to its residents. With the emergence of cloud computing and a need to transfer increasingly large files between town police departments and municipal offices, the Borough knew its existing WAN and Internet connection – which was shared between the offices of State College, Ferguson, Patton, College, the Centre Region Council of Governments (CRCOG) and the Centre Area Transportation Authority (CATA) – was sorely in need of an upgrade.

"A regional backup program allows our locations to replicate data between sites to prepare ourselves in the event of a disaster situation. Being able to do this without compromising access speeds for our other operations is critical," said Angel H. Hernandez, Chief Technology Officer for the Borough of State College. "We also rely on our network to share police records between departments, as well as regional aerial maps, which are essential for our community planning and development efforts. These are huge files that are constantly changing, so being able to share them with all parties involved has vastly improved the quality of services we’re able to provide to our residents."

Comcast Business answered the call by installing a comprehensive Ethernet Network Service that now connects seven separate locations – the State College Municipal Building, the Centre County 911 Center, CATA, CRCOG and the State College, Ferguson and Patton police departments – to each other via a meshed network that offers 30 Mbps of capacity. A separate 100 Mbps Ethernet Dedicated Internet line is also housed at the State College Municipal Building so all Internet traffic is managed from a single protected source.

"The customer service we’ve received from Comcast Business thus far has been impressive," continued Hernandez. "The best part, however, is that any one of these seven locations now has more network capacity than what our combined coalition previously had – and because the services provide us with both a WAN and Internet access, we can support each site centrally, ensure all internal network traffic is protected, and transfer data like large map files, backups and video footage significantly faster without interrupting the daily work that goes into being a service-oriented government."

The additional network capacity being provided by Comcast Business Ethernet services will also allow these local governments to consider the possibility of sharing streaming video footage with local police from various street cameras across the region in the near future. This will add yet another feature that was never before possible with the organization’s previous network provider.

"Municipalities today have the responsibility of ensuring the happiness of their residents while still keeping costs in check. Many are finding that partnering with a service provider that already has the technology infrastructure in place can help them do both quickly and cost-effectively," said Paul Merritt, vice president of Comcast Business in the Keystone Region. "We have invested decades of research and engineering into building an infrastructure that meets the high-speed, high-capacity needs of business, education and municipal customers around the country, and we look forward to continuing to launch new and innovative services for local governments of all sizes."