Through funding from the UT Health Northeast Office of Institutional Advancement and through generous participation of NETnet and candidate member institutions, Magellan Advisors prepared a broadband network assessment to determine long-term strategies and objectives to meet the current and future needs of its members. The Consortium has operated a wireless microwave network and fiber-optic infrastructure installed from time to time with available funding. This network has worked well for 15 years and been a pivotal source of broadband capacity for area K-12 schools, colleges and universities, and healthcare organizations.
Now NETnet is considering greater use of fiber-optic network capacity pursuant to a long-term plan to reduce its ongoing leased services costs. Gaining greater control of the network will provide economical expansion of bandwidth to its members and offer the latest broadband services that will support the consortium for the next 20 years. NETnet believes that an initiative providing for management of regional fiber-optic capacity may be the best way to insure that it is able to address the needs of its members, and be able to maintain financial viability, therefore insuring the sustainability of the network and the mission of the Consortium.
The key components of this plan include:
Needs assessment of the Northeast Texas Consortium’s constituents, focusing on current broadband services and projected requirements over 10-20 year periods
Expansion of current services to meet the future needs of constituent organizations, focusing on emerging technology and communications infrastructure and services
Analysis of NETnet network architecture to identify segments of the network that could be built to transition NETnet from a leased services model to a model that will better provide for sustainable operations and growth
Identification of key funding sources that would provide NETnet the opportunity to build network where appropriate, including Federal and State grant or loan programs
Demand planning for the NETnet network, determining customer and service growth, bandwidth requirements, capacity planning, network enhancements and coordination
Service portfolio development to accommodate customer demand and identify new and emerging services that NETnet could offer to its consortium members
Financial analysis to show the net present value of the difference between continuing along the present mode of paying monthly lease prices for circuits versus a self-construction option with service provider partners in the NETnet region
Excerpt from the Executive Summary, Magellan Advisory, December 2015