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Nuz: Internet Expansion, Permaculture Bike Rides and a New Trail

One major communications company doesn’t like fast internet

Internet service provider Cruzio has landed a state grant to bring gigabit-speed internet to several parts of the county. 

The Santa Cruz-based company will build out fiber to seven mobile home parks, including Rodeo Mobile Estates, Soquel Gardens, Alimur, Shangri-La Estates, Blue & Gold Star, Castle Mobile Estates, and Opal Cliffs. Cruzio already covers El Rio Mobile Home Park.

Cruzio expects to finish the buildout by February 2021, running mostly down 41st Avenue from Soquel Drive to Portola Drive. The finished project will bring crazy-fast, gigabit-speed internet to 773 homes, more than 260 of which currently don’t currently have internet access of at least 6 Mbps download and 1 Mbps upload, based on state data. Gigabit speeds will cost $75 per month, or people can access a lower-speed option for $15 per month. 

Cruzio had initially hoped to bring gigabit internet to six additional mobile home parks. Charter Communications, however, challenged Cruzio’s grant application with the state, leading those six parks to be removed from the final grant. Only in America would a “communications” company lead the charge against speedy government-funded internet.

PLANTING A TRIP

This past Monday, permaculture expert Ken Foster embarked on his annual commute from Santa Cruz to Monterey’s Asilomar Conference Grounds for the 40th annual EcoFarm Conference

And holy spokes! According to some new-fangled “maps” feature that Nuz found on the internet, that is 53 miles one-way. Foster, founder of Terra Nova Ecological Landscaping, is hosting a daylong permaculture workshop on Wednesday, Jan. 22 as part of the 40th annual EcoFarm Conference.

NOW TRAILING

The first real portion of the rail trail—meaning that’s longer than a couple hundred feet—is finally breaking ground this week. Out of the 20 planned segments, this is the easier part of what’s perhaps the easiest segment to construct. The good news is that this portion, on Santa Cruz’s Westside, should get lots of usage. The 1.2-mile segment will run from Bay and California to Natural Bridges Drive. Construction is expected to be completed in about eight months, before the fall of 2020.

Someone could have thrown a celebration, but let’s be honest: this is taking way longer than anyone hoped for. Did we mention that Ken Foster is biking to Monterey? Can’t we, like, give him a protected bike lane at least?

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