Ciena powers open-access fiber expansion in Georgia and beyond

Through a recent partnership announcement with Ciena, eCommunity Fiber is poised to extend its open-access fiber network in Georgia and beyond.

Launched by parent company A2D, an open-access local exchange carrier, the privately-funded eCommunity Fiber network currently serves five cities within Clayton County in Georgia. eCommunity is now gearing up for its second Georgia County deployment, with plans to cross other state lines in 2024.

Ciena will supply equipment for carrier interconnect gateways and terabit+ transport/metro-E connectivity in eCommunity’s last-mile fiber networks. This will include Ciena’s 3922 Platform, 5164 Router, 8114 Coherent Aggregation Router, and 8190 Coherent Aggregation Router. The network is managed via Ciena’s Manage, Control, and Plan (MCP) domain controller.

According to the eCommunity announcement, the partnership will quadruple its line rate from 100Gb/s to 400Gb/s—"with the potential for even higher capacities in the future.”

“It also empowers eCommunity with the adaptability to swiftly allocate capacity where it is most needed, utilizing a singular, streamlined and cost-effective architecture, thereby enhancing the operational performance and reliability of network management,” the announcement said.

eCommunity entered Clayton County in August of 2022 by purchasing 103 miles of underground fiber passing thru the cities of Riverdale, Jonesboro, Forest Park, Lovejoy, Morrow, Lake City, as well as some suburban areas of Clayton County.

According to a map on the company's site, it also has "upcoming" plans to expand into Texas and Mississippi.

Open-access networks are deployed by one company and then leased to multiple internet service providers, which can then offer broadband service to end customers.

Providers serving through the eCommunity network include ConnectFast, Culture Wireless, Momentum Telecom and Syringa Networks. Lumen and Nitel services are also available for businesses in the area.

Although each eCommunity is majority-owned and/or operated by A2D, the carrier does not provide internet, TV, phone or any other consumer-based broadband services to anyone connected to an eCommunity Network, notes the company's site.

Advocates for open access networks have said the model gives consumers a choice of providers, and can solve for low returns on capital investment when there are too many competitors building new infrastructure in a market.