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UNH Announces Statewide Broadband Internet Forums

By David Sims, Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space
September 22, 2010

The New Hampshire Broadband Mapping Project (NHBMP), which is managed by UNH’s Geographically Referenced Analysis and Information Transfer (NH GRANIT) project, will host a series of public forums around the state beginning September 28, 2010, through mid-November. The informational meetings will familiarize participants with the NHBMP’s ongoing efforts to inventory and map broadband coverage available across New Hampshire, and will collect important input from residents, businesses, and institutions on where broadband is and is not currently available. 

The NHBMP is a coordinated, multi-agency initiative funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act through the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), and is part of a national effort to expand high-speed Internet access and adoption through improved data collection and broadband planning.

GRANIT, which is housed at the UNH Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space (EOS), serves as the statewide geographic information system (GIS) clearinghouse. In January 2010, the U.S. Department of Commerce awarded GRANIT approximately $1.7 million to manage NHBMP.

“The results of the mapping activity will be an important determinant in planning for future broadband access across the state, and that access is vital for all citizens in terms of economic development, education, health care, public health and safety, and quality of life issues,” says GRANIT director Fay Rubin of the Complex Systems Research Center at EOS. She adds, “We encourage citizens to join the NHBMP and provide input to this important mapping project.”

For more information on the project, please visit iwantbroadbandnh.org.

Sessions will be co-hosted by UNH, the nine regional planning commissions, and the N.H. Department of Resources and Economic Development. Alphabetically by town/city, they are scheduled as follows:

Claremont     Tuesday, November 2, 2010, 6-8 PM
                   River Valley Community College, Room 226
                   1 College Drive, Claremont, NH  03473
                   Contact Rachel Ruppel at the Upper Valley Lake Sunapee Regional Planning Commission (rruppel@uvlsrpc.org) for further information.

Concord       Tuesday, November 16, 2010, 5:30-7:30 PM
                   Horseshoe Pond Place, Community Resource Room
                   28 Commercial St., Concord, NH  03301
                   Contact Craig Tufts at the Central NH Regional Planning
                   Commission (ctufts@cnhrpc.org) for further information.

Exeter            Tuesday, October 19, 2010, 6-8 PM
                   Exeter Public Library
                   4 Chestnut St., Exeter, NH  03833
                   Contact Rob Pruyne at the Rockingham Planning
                   Commission (rpruyne@rpc-nh.org) for further information.

Groveton       Tuesday, October 26, 2010, 5:30-7:30 PM
                   Northumberland Town Hall
                   10 Union Square, Groveton, NH  03582
                   Contact James Steele at the North Country Council
                   (jsteele@nccouncil.org) for further information.

Haverhill      Monday, October 18, 2010, 5:30-7:30 PM
                   Haverhill Town Offices
                   2975 Dartmouth College Highway, North Haverhill, NH  03774
                   Contact James Steele at the North Country Council
                   (jsteele@nccouncil.org) for further information.

Keene          Tuesday, October 12, 2010, 6:30-8:30 PM
                   Heberton Hall/Keene Public Library
                   60 Winter St., Keene NH  03431
                   Contact Michael Blair at the Southwest Region Planning
                   Commission (mblair@swrpc.org) for further information.

Lebanon       Tuesday, October 5, 2010, 6-8 PM
                   Upper Valley Lake Sunapee Regional Planning Commission
                   10 Water St., Lebanon, NH  03766
                   Contact Rachel Ruppel at the Upper Valley Lake Sunapee
                   Regional Planning Commission (rruppel@uvlsrpc.org) for
                   further information.

Manchester  Thursday, September 30, 2010, 6:30-8:30 PM
                   Southern NH Planning Commission
                   438 Dubuque St., Manchester, NH  03102
                   Contact Amy Kizak at the Southern NH Planning Commission
                   (akizak@snhpc.org) for further information.

Milford         Tuesday, September 28, 2010, 6:30-8:30 PM
                   Milford Town Hall, Banquet Hall (3rd floor)
                   1 Union Square, Milford, NH  03055
                   Contact Steve Schaffer at the Nashua Regional Planning
                   Commission (steves@nashuarpc.org) for further information.

Ossipee        Thursday, October 21, 2010, 6:30-8:30 PM
                   Ossipee Town Hall
                   7 Dore St., Ossipee, NH  03864
                   Contact Michelle Therrien at the Lakes Region Planning
                   Commission (lrpc@lakesrpc.org) for further information.

Peterborough Monday, October 4, 2010, 6:30-8:30 PM
                   Peterborough Town House
                   1 Grove St., Peterborough, NH  03458
                   Contact Michael Blair at the Southwest Region Planning
                   Commission (mblair@swrpc.org) for further information.

Plymouth     Tuesday, November 9, 2010, 5:30-7:30 PM
                   Plymouth Town Hall
                   6 Post Office Square, Plymouth, NH  03264
                   Contact James Steele at the North Country Council
                   (jsteele@nccouncil.org) for further information.

Rochester    Monday, October 25, 2010, 6:30-8:30 PM
                   Rochester Community Center, Conference Room 1
                   150 Wakefield St., Rochester, NH  03857
                   Contact Dan Camara at the Strafford Regional Planning
                   Commission (dcamara@strafford.org) for further information.



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