Google Fiber huts deemed eyesores replaced with smaller housing

Google closer to bringing internet services to Alamo City

SAN ANTONIO – Google said it will now provide high-speed internet without TV services in the Alamo City through Google Fiber.

The company is making changes to how it houses its infrastructure, and the process has been anything but simple.

In 2016, Google built two huts to house its infrastructure, one of which is at Haskin Park. Neighbors fought to have it removed, calling it an eyesore.

For residents, it was about the amount of space the hut took up and the city not going through proper channels to allow it.

“The lack of transparency. The fact that they didn't talk to the neighbors. They skipped many of the rules that they require many of the citizens to conform with,” said John Whitsett, a resident who lives near the park.

Deputy City Manager Peter Zanoni said getting to this point has been a work in progress.

"As they evolve in how they (Google) put the network in, they are going to a much smaller hut, or cabinet is what they call it now. So in the neighborhoods, you won’t have these big huts anymore. You'll have smaller cabinets like you see today. These little green utility boxes,” Zanoni said.

Google said it’s almost ready to offer its services. A price point, however, has not yet been revealed.

"There’s two primary areas near West End Park and the near West Side of downtown and then further west in City Council District 6. They are doing some micro-trenching, a pilot program on how they lay the fiber in the ground,” Zanoni said.

Zanoni said the city will have to be patient. Google Fiber is on the City Council agenda for Wednesday and will continue to be discussed.

“Doing an update with City Council on the lease agreement that Google has with the city as they continue their build-out,” Zanoni said.

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