LinkAMERICA Alliance gathers data online for states and assists them in finding broadband funding as L.R. Kimball helps set the standard for mapping
EBENSBURG, Pa., March 16 — (PRNewswire) — As the federal government begins a second round of funding for broadband service expansion across the United States, L.R. Kimball and its LinkAMERICA partners are already setting the standard for broadband mapping in four states. The alliance of four communications technology firms has gathered extensive mapping data for Alabama, Idaho, Wisconsin and Wyoming, each of which selected the LinkAMERICA team to lead its mapping efforts.
LinkAMERICA is a joint effort of L.R. Kimball, CostQuest Associates, e-Copernicus and VisionTech 360. The team works with state governments and municipalities to unlock broadband stimulus grants through independent broadband mapping and assessment. LinkAMERICA was the first non-governmental entity to receive broadband mapping grants from the federal National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). NTIA has set a March 31, 2010, deadline for the work in which LinkAMERICA and L.R. Kimball is currently engaged.
L.R. Kimball contributes many decades of expertise in spatial data and geographical information systems (GIS) to the broadband mapping projects that now are beginning to proliferate across the country. With its LinkAMERICA partners, L.R. Kimball is implementing an approach that is the first of its kind. The group is collecting data using Web-based systems, and is displaying all the information it gathers online, creating interactive tools that officials, companies and consumers can use across each state to view the services that each broadband provider offers in their areas. LinkAMERICA is assembling data from a total of nearly 600 providers in the four states where it currently is working.
CostQuest is a globally recognized leader in geospatial, economic and network modeling. e-Copernicus , headed by former directors of NTIA and the federal Rural Utilities Service (RUS), is guiding the stewardship programs for the states to help them obtain broadband funding. VisionTech 360 is carrying out the planning for Web access, combining research methodologies with Web applications.
"The combination of partnering firms within the LinkAMERICA Alliance is different from other broadband mapping service providers in a number of ways," noted Joel McCamely, Senior Vice President, L.R. Kimball. "First, our collective telecommunications and GIS experience is much greater than that of most other firms. Our use of the Web to gather data, collect survey information, conduct the mapping and push information out to state and local agencies and residents is the first program of its kind. Our stewardship program helps states understand where funding is and provides them a funding manual that identifies short and long-term funding sources from federal, state and private organizations. We conduct consumer surveys across each state to evaluate how people are using and planning to use broadband. Finally, we conduct workshops with technology organizations and service providers to acquaint them with the findings in our studies."
Once the LinkAMERICA partners have completed the mapping data, each company will be available for consulting and implementation of broadband networks and systems, based on their deep understanding of telecommunications and of broadband specifically. The alliance is one of the few groups in America with experience in the broadband mapping arena, and its work is establishing innovative procedures to expedite mapping across the country".
About L.R. Kimball
Established in 1953, L. R. Kimball is among the nation's leading professional service companies offering its clients architectural and structural design services, civil and environmental engineering expertise, communications technology solutions and consulting. With a focus on targeted results, expertly managed, L.R. Kimball is committed to offering its diverse public- and private-sector clients a tailored approach designed to meet their needs and budget. Headquartered in Ebensburg, Pa., the company employs 600 at 12 locations in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Texas, Florida, and Virginia. Visit www.lrkimball.com.
The LinkAMERICA Alliance works with state governments and municipalities to unlock broadband stimulus grants through independent broadband mapping and assessment. LinkAMERICA's multidisciplinary alliance of experts provides policymakers with actionable plans for broadband deployment that balance the needs of citizens, businesses and service providers. Our comprehensive approach analyzes both the supply- and demand-side barriers to broadband deployment to deliver results that are fact-based, research-focused and consensus-driven.
SOURCE L.R. Kimball
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