Dark fiber deficit dims data center hopes for NY town

The Buffalo News reports that the town of Lockport, NY recently lost out on a big data center contract because its industrial park lacks installed dark fiber.

The Buffalo Newsreports that the town of Lockport, NY recently lost out on a big data center contract because its industrial park lacks dark fiber communications cabling for providing high-speed Internet service. In response to this failure, the town's Industrial Development Agency (IDA) has now reportedly heard price quotes from a broker representing several possible vendors for the IDA’s own dark fiber service, to be installed in the town's industrial park -- reducing the chances of other such deals falling apart.

“We have been unsuccessful in recruiting one of the data center prospects we’ve been working on for two years,” said Lockport IDA executive director, David R. Kinyon. “It was not because our industrial park is deficient in any way, but because of lack of dark fiber.” The name of the rejecting company was not disclosed.

See also: IBM could lose $836M data center contract in Texas

The major drawback to dark fiber, Kinyon added, is that “it’s expensive.” To wit, the Buffalo News report said that that Mitch Stessing of U.S. Network Solutions told the IDA board that companies prefer to have their own dedicated fiber-optic cables, even if they have to supply the connection equipment. For connecting to a dark fiber network now under construction west of Lockport by Fibertech Networks of nearby Rochester, NY, the town would have to pay $784,000 up front, plus $4,950 a month, Stessing added.

Ten lines of dark fiber were installed when Yahoo constructed its data center in the Lockport IDA's industrial park (of which, at present, the company is using only two). But Yahoo paid for its own dark fiber installation; the data center that backed away from the recent deal with Lockport IDA was looking for its dark fiber to be provided. Lockport IDA board member Duncan N. Carlson commented, “We may have to make a big investment ... We may have to bury [the cost of installing dark fiber] in the [sale] cost of the land.”

Full story:Lack of ‘dark fiber’ hinders data center deals for Lockport IDA (buffalonews.com)

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