Increase Internet Access for Families with School-Age Children

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a_place_for_everyoneCouncil Goal

Increase internet access for families with school‐age children and spark innovation with mutually defined goals defined by Chapel Hill‐ Carrboro City Schools, other local governments and UNC

Goal Champion

Sarah Viñas, Assistant Director, Office of Housing and Community



Current Status

  • AT&T has executed a Master Agreement with the Town and five other municipalities belonging to the North Carolina Next Generation Network (NCNGN) coalition. AT&T continues its fiber network build-out needed to support gigabit speed service in Chapel Hill. The gigabit service will continue to expand to additional residences and businesses in Chapel Hill.
  • The Town is also engaged in a concurrent effort with Google Fiber, which announced on January 27, 2015 that it will bring ultra-high-speed internet to Chapel Hill.   Google Fiber will also bring gigabit speed internet to: Carrboro, Cary, Durham, Garner, Morrisville and Raleigh, as well as several metropolitan areas across the country. Google Fiber is anticipated to begin building again in Chapel Hill in the winter of 2018. 
  • We have ensured that all of the Town's public housing neighborhoods have free or reduced rate internet access.  Under the terms of the Master Agreement, AT&T has provided free internet service hardwired directly into each unit in 8 of our public housing neighborhoods.  Google Fiber has committed to providing free internet service to the remainder of our public housing neighborhoods. In the meantime, the Town has established Wi-Fi access points in the neighborhoods not already receiving free internet service through AT&T or provided access to reduced rates through Spectrum.   
  • Staff continue to work with AT&T to finalize the community center and small business sites that will receive prioritized service.
  • The Town has also initiated a partnership with Kramden Institute, creating a Digital Literacy Program, a four-part computer basics class series for public housing residents at the end of which participants are awarded a free laptop computer.  The Town is currently exploring ways to build on the success of the program to date and expand our Digital Literacy Program.
  • Members of NCNGN including UNC, NC State and Duke are working with the Towns of Chapel Hill and Carrboro as well as the CHCCS on community enablement projects.  The projects include testing interactive training opportunities using the gigabit internet services.  This includes training, mentoring and a virtual reality training pilot.

  • Technology Solution continues to work with the CHCCS planning the use of dark fiber to improve internet access for several schools while reducing cost. 

Last Updated

November 9, 2017




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