Gigabit Chicago

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Gigabit Chicago is a gigabit-speed networking project in Chicago. It is a partnership of the State of Illinois, the City of Chicago and Gigabit Squared.


Following up on a request for information issued in September 2012,[1] in October, the University of Chicago, in partnership with the State of Illinois and the City, announced a project to bring gigabit-speed fiber to over 4,825 residents, businesses, schools and healthcare institutions in the Chicago’s Mid-South Side neighborhoods. Based on neighborhood participation and adoption, it has been reported that next generation broadband access (gigabit-per-second) will be potentially available to as many as 210,000 residents who live in over 79,000 households as well as the 10,000 businesses in the area.[2]


The project consists of a fiber-to-the-home / fiber-to-the-business network as well as an ultra-high speed wireless network.[3]

Deployment and services[edit]

The network will initially be deployed to 9 demonstration neighborhoods:

Hyde Park, Kenwood, Woodlawn and Washington Park will be among the initial neighborhoods for the buildout, getting fiber and wireless capacity in the next year. The other communities will start with wireless capacity, to be built out with fiber in the next 4 years.[5]


The State of Illinois awarded $2 million to Gigabit Squared as part of the Illinois Gigabit Communities Challenge. The University of Chicago committed $2 million, and Gigabit Squared will provide $5 million for the Gigabit Chicago project.[6]

The network will be owned and operated by Gigabit Squared.[5]

Financial and Organizational issues[edit]

Gigabit Chicago's parent company, Gigabit Squared had its co-founder and president resign early in 2014 after Seattle sued over unpaid bills.[7]

Chicago was also facing issues with Gigabit, as no milestones have been met after $2 million of investment from the city. [8]


  1. ^ "City of Chicago issues RFI for gigabit services". Broadband Communities. Retrieved 6 February 2013. 
  2. ^ McCann, Bailey. "Illinois launches gigabit broadband initiative for Mid-South Chicago neighborhoods". CivSource Online. Retrieved 6 February 2013. 
  3. ^ Fitchard, Kevin. "Gigabit Squared plans fiber broadband for Chicago's south side". GigaOm. Retrieved 6 February 2013. 
  4. ^ Pletz, John (16 October 2012). "State, U of C plan broadband push for South Side". Crain's Chicago Business. Retrieved 6 February 2013. 
  5. ^ a b "Gigabit Chicago - Technical FAQs". Gigabit Chicago. Archived from the original on 15 June 2013. Retrieved 6 February 2013. 
  6. ^ "Gigabit Squared's Gigabit Neighborhood Gateway Program: State's $2 Million Seed Investment Will Jumpstart Fiber Optic and Wireless Network in Mid-South Chicago Neighborhoods; Help Create More Than 50 Jobs". Broadband Illinois. Retrieved 6 February 2013. 
  7. ^ [1]
  8. ^