In a new agreement, AT&T will pay the city of San Jose approximately $5 million over a maximum 15-year period to deploy 170 small cells on existing public assets, reported LightReading.
The telecom company will pay an
upfront fee of $850,000 to fund new public works staff to help with
small cell permitting transactions, and another $1 million to help
improve the city’s permitting processes, according to LightReading.
The deal is beneficial for both sides, as the city will collect
additional revenue and the carrier will receive a blanket agreement for
small cell deployments. San Jose is also
focused on ensuring that improved connectivity is accessible to all. CIO
Shireen Santosham notes that the city has taken the novel approach of
dedicating funding from utility pole rentals to digital inclusion
“This model is certainly a pioneering
model. I don’t think any other city that I know of has really taken the
revenues from these deals and earmarked them in this way specifically to
bridge the digital divide,” says Santosham.
AT&T vice president of technology
planning Jason Porter, sees the agreement as a sound financial
investment. “We’re looking at the broader community so if we can do
something where we provide some revenue for the city, but we can offset
that with revenue we gain by being in that area…and we think [that] will
drive additional revenue into AT&T, then that’s a benefit.” Continue Reading