Is Google Fiber expanding into Des Moines? Company official says that's the plan

·2 min read

Google Fiber has plans to expand its fiber-optic internet service to Des Moines.

The company in March began offering its one- or two-gigabit service, which is about 100 times faster than the average broadband connection, to West Des Moines residents. At the time West Des Moines was one of just 17 metro areas in the country, and the only one in Iowa, to have access to its service.

Andy Simpson, the company's central region general manager, said more customers than expected signed up in West Des Moines, so it made sense to move into Des Moines. Simpson declined to give a number of West Des Moines customers to sign up.

"Des Moines (has) been on our interest list for a while," Simpson said. "It was timely from where we were as a business and a team. It's an area we knew had a desire for fast, reliable internet."

Google Fiber's one-gigabit upload and download speed internet service costs $70 per month for residential customers. The two-gigabit service costs $100 per month.

Google Fiber's goal is to start construction this year, Simpson said. He did not have an estimate for when the service may go online in Des Moines, and Des Moines City Manager Scott Sanders said Google has not told the city where it intends to install its fiber-optic cables.

"We don't know how much of the community they're actually going to build into," Sanders said.

The company is still figuring out where it will offer the service, Simpson said.

"Our goal is to offer service to as many residents, addresses as possible," Simpson said. "But it's still very early on and we have to design the main routes, and then get into the specific neighborhoods," Simpson said.

West Des Moines paid $40 million to build fiber-optic conduits and gave Google Fiber temporary exclusive use of those conduits. The company will build its own conduits in Des Moines, according to Sanders.

"They will be responsible for the entire investment of conduit and fiber when they cross over into Des Moines," he said.

Google Fiber has plans to bring its fiber-optic internet service to Des Moines, a Google official wrote April 5, 2022, on the company's website.
Google Fiber has plans to bring its fiber-optic internet service to Des Moines, a Google official wrote April 5, 2022, on the company's website.

More: West Des Moines gets Iowa's only Google Fiber office, giving access to 1 or 2 gigabit fiber-optic internet

Indiana-based MetroNet began offering fiber-optic internet service to Des Moines about a year ago. MetroNet also offers service in Davenport, Bettendorf and Ames, with networks under construction in nearly 20 other Iowa cities, including Carlisle, Grimes, Iowa City, Pleasant Hill, Polk city and Urbandale.

West Des Moines-based Mediacom offers fiber-optic internet services in Des Moines, and CenturyLink offers the service in some parts of the city.

Sanders said another fiber-optic internet provider is welcome in the city, and he hopes more competition drives prices down to make ultra-fast internet accessible to more people.

"Affordability is the next hurdle the city is concerned with," he said.

Philip Joens covers breaking news for The Des Moines Register. He can be reached at 515-443-3347 at pjoens@registermedia.com or on Twitter @Philip_Joens.

This article originally appeared on Des Moines Register: Google Fiber expanding fiber-optic internet service to Des Moines