FHWA Proposes Right-Of-Way Rule For Broadband Installation

The Federal Highway Administration proposed a new rule on August 13 to improve coordination in the use of highway rights-of-way to support the installation of broadband technologies.

Highway rights-of-way are commonly used to accommodate public utilities, such as phone lines, electrical lines and pipelines. Expanding their use to include wireless broadband technology is a “critical next step” in advancing connectivity in rural America, noted FHWA Administrator Nicole Nason in a statement…

FHWA pointed out that its proposed rule would help improve coordination with construction projects and ensure that the digging required to install utilities also be utilized for installation of broadband infrastructure, decreasing repeat excavation and minimizing disruption to the traveling public.

State departments of transportation are already working to find ways to help expand broadband access to rural areas.