Reps Eshoo and McKinley Introduce ‘Dig Once’ Legislation to Reduce Cost of Expanding Broadband

Reps Anna Eshoo (D-CA) and David B. McKinley (R-WV) introduced the Broadband Conduit Deployment Act of 2018. This commonsense legislation, commonly referred to as ‘Dig Once’, would mandate the inclusion of broadband conduit—plastic pipes which house fiber-optic communications cable—during the construction of any road receiving federal funding. This practice will eliminate the need to dig up recently-paved roads to expand broadband infrastructure, significantly reducing the cost of increasing Internet access to underserved communities across the country.

This creative, bipartisan proposal will reduce costs drastically. “By laying broadband conduit during construction of roads that receive federal funding, broadband providers can later install fiber-optic cable without costly excavation of newly built roads,” explained Rep Eshoo. The Federal Highway Administration estimates it is ten times more expensive to lay fiber under an existing road, than to dig a channel for it when the road is being fixed or built. The Broadband Conduit Deployment Act of 2018 is the first in a series of bills Congresswoman Eshoo will be introducing to expand broadband access in local communities across the country.


Reps Eshoo and McKinley Introduce ‘Dig Once’ Legislation to Reduce Cost of Expanding Broadband