Chattanooga is known for being the home of the Rock City tourist attraction, and its train was the subject of a popular song in the Big Band era. But who knew this Tennessee city is also renowned for its Internet speed? In fact, this is a southern town that likes to call itself the Gig City — that’s “Gig” as in “gigabyte,” not a place for bands to play! Let’s find out why:
America’s Fastest Internet Speed
Chattanooga offers a 1 Gbps fiber Internet connection throughout the city without the help of Google Fiber. The fiber network was installed by the city’s publicly owned electric company, EPB. The service is available to all the city’s residents and businesses.
An Innovative Smart Grid
Another advantage of the fiber network is an advanced electric smart grid, also installed by EPB. The city claims it is the nation’s most advanced electricity grid. This should lead to more efficient power delivery, saving energy and money over the long haul.
No Longer the Dirtiest City in America”
Chattanooga used to be known as the “Dirtiest City in America” — a moniker no metropolitan area wants. In 2011, Outside magazine named the city the “Best Town Ever.” A perfect example of this civic renewal is the city’s innovative, publicly owned Internet service and smart grid.
3-D Printing Becoming Big in Chattanooga
The nascent 3-D printing industry is thriving in Chattanooga, partially driven by the availability of a fast Internet network. Seed companies in additive manufacturing (another name for 3-D printing) are popping up all over the city.
GIGTANK Business Incubator
Chattanooga’s GIGTANK business incubator is the only one in the US connected to a fiber-optic network. In addition to additive manufacturing, other business types are taking advantage of the copious Internet bandwidth to start thriving, innovative companies.
Chattanooga’s renaissance as Gig City is a great example of the business development horsepower provided by a fast Internet connection. Expect other cities all over the United States to offer similar programs, which are more widely available in Europe and Asia.
Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons