Description / Explanation
KempenGlas is a FTTH project in the rural area of the “Kempen” in the south of The Netherlands. The project was carried out by volunteers who went door-to-door to involve people in their municipality (locals for locals). Four local cooperatives (one per municipality) have been formed along with one joint cooperative “KempenGlas” to facilitate them. Through local action and volunteering, it increased trust within the community and lowered the costs, since the population has massively contributed with their share of the required capital. This project has thus created a relevant bonding which allowed the community to get a state-of-the-art network while influencing its further development.
02/10/2014 to 01/09/2017
Project submitted by
Coöperatie KempenGlas U.A.
Infrastructure & Service
Speed / performance
Infrastructure, technology and architecture
The core network connects 4 PoP-locations in a ring that together cover the whole area. All end-user connections consist of 2 fibers that are connected to a PoP in a point-to-point fashion. Both PoPs and cables in the field have reserve capacity as to cover future needs in the whole (rural) area. Two backhaul connections connected to two different PoPs provide resilience. The network has a Gigabit Ethernet and DVB-C active layer that is provided to the end-user on the two separate fibres. Maintenance of the passive and the active layer are separately contracted and provided by two different companies. The services are injected at an independent crossconnect at the university campus. Due to the openness of the network several companies can provide their services (Internet, television, telephony) to the end-users.
Sources of EU funding
Limited possibilities were available.
Actors involved and their roles
Volunteers recruited members, organised local meet-ups, prepared the business model, started the cooperative, designed network, found suppliers, prepared contracts, monitored the progress and provided board members. The end-users were inhabitants of the area and members of the cooperative. The province and the bank provided the loans.
People can work better from the home, elderly people can live longer in their own homes, children have better digital learning opportunities and businesses go online.
One of the few projects driven by volunteers that actually succeeded in realizing such an advanced network. A success factor is the participation of a number of volunteers skilled in running a company, telecommunication law, optical communication research and networking, telecommunication services and accountancy. Most initiatives have volunteers that are not into this field and do not succeed in such a complex venture.
The result is a high speed network for the inhabitants of the rural area of the “Kempen” where a high percentage of people joined the initiative. It stimulates businesses and stops the outflow of people to the city. It attracts highly-educated workers from the city to the green rural area to live in a natural environment and still have all the facilities. The best part is that the people living in the centres of the municipalities involved are now questioning why they don't have these facilities.
Technical potential for expansion, future proof infrastructure
Upload: 1Gbps, download: 1Gbps, ping-time: 6 ms (to a server on the Internet). In this rural area before the project only DSL was available. At some distant locations up- and download speeds used to be only 256kbps. The infrastructure is point-to-point single mode fibre (Ethernet) and has a lot of future potential in upgrading the network equipment to e.g. 10/100 Gbps. Core elements in the network are doubled (backhaul, rings between PoPs, core switches, UPS, etc).