Concord Mayor Scott Padgett asks: As the capital of NASCAR Nation, Concord and Kannapolis are all about high speed; why not of super-fast Internet?
The two cities are partnering to apply for the Google broadband project, which aims to bring incredibly faster Internet service to homes and businesses in select U.S. communities.
Since Google's Feb. 10 announcement that it will build and test ultra-high-speed broadband networks in locations across the country, more than 600 communities have said they'll compete for the prize. In North Carolina, Raleigh, Durham, Hickory, Gastonia and Asheville have already said they'll try to be selected.
Google said its project will bring Internet speeds up to one gigabit per second, or more than 100 times faster than today's fastest speeds.
Google would provide the network and distribution system, Concord officials said. Local Internet service providers would continue to serve local customers. Google would offer its service at a competitive price to at least 50,000 people, and potentially up to 500,000 people, Concord officials said.
What would landing the project mean?
"The possibilities are endless," Padgett said in announcing its partnership with Kannapolis recently.
Public school students could interact with peers across the world, he said. Medical professionals from Carolinas Medical Center-NorthEast could contact others via streaming media to learn and share important information.
Researchers at the North Carolina Research Campus in Kannapolis could do the same, Kannapolis Mayor Bob Misenheimer said.
You can help the Concord-Kannapolis effort by logging onto the cities' Facebook pages and posting comments supporting their application to Google.
Create YouTube videos and commercials, write letters to the editors of newspapers, and call radio and television stations, officials urge. And share the message with your personal database: your family, friends and acquaintances.