San Mateo businesses should now enjoy substantially faster Internet connections, thanks to a project known as “Digital Downtown.”
The project’s goal is to bring in new businesses, particularly in the tech sector, said San Mateo Deputy Mayor David Lim.
“We heard that in the past, one limitation of recruiting small business was the slow internet connection,” said Lim
To compound this problem, budget cuts had recently forced the City to lay off its Director of Business Development, who is typically responsible for recruiting new companies to come to the area.
As a result, the City Council unanimously approved $75,000 to fund a new initiative by the Chamber of Commerce known as EDGE, to bring more lucrative technology jobs to the city.
EDGE reached out to Comcast Business Services to revamp San Mateo’s Internet connection. Comcast then invested approximately $1 million in the project. Consequently, Comcast will be the only high-speed internet provider in San Mateo.
City officials hail the project as emblematic of how projects can be carried out without substantial taxpayer spending.
“We are honored and proud to partner in this public/private/nonprofit manner, and know that our local workplaces - not to mention the citizens of San Mateo - will all benefit from the increased data density and content richness available through these new services from Comcast,” said Mayor Brandt Grotte.
Business owners also praised the move.
“Having a preeminent fiber-optic backbone will allow traditional businesses like ours to process transactions more quickly and serve customers better, and will allow start-up Internet businesses to scale up as they develop,” said Gary DeSantis, owner of .
What do you think of this unique partnership and the resulting faster Internet service? Have you noticed a difference in your Internet speed? Tell us in the comments below.