The City of Georgetown approved private infrastructure investment firm Ubiquity to build a $75 million open-access fiber-optic network throughout the city during a Dec. 14 city council meeting.

Ubiquity plans to finish building out the fiber optic network within 2-to-3 years, according to a press release. Customers will be able to connect with Ubiquity’s network through any cell service provider, Managing Director Greg Dial said. The network will be able to connect to 80% of the city and 95% of businesses throughout Georgetown, according to the release. Ubiquity will announce its first service provider tenant in January and plans for the first customers to come online in summer 2022, according to the release.

Fiber optic networks have a longer shelf life than cable networks, Dial said. This new fiber-optic network has the potential to serve the city of Georgetown for up to 40 years, he said.

“Georgetown has a single cable provider and there isn’t a ton of fiber in the city,” Dial said. “Our view is that we put this infrastructure in the ground and we open it up to anyone else who wants to sit on top of it. That can be in your standard internet service provider brands and it could be things five or 10 years down the road that we don’t know about today.”

No one is required to use the company's fiber-optic network, Dial said. The company’s goal is to increase the city’s access to cell service providers as much as possible, Ubiquity Managing Partner Jamie Earp said in the release. Ubiquity plans to continue its expansion in the north Austin area and will announce more development news in the coming weeks, according to the release.