SAN LEANDRO -- The chairman of the Federal Communications Commission was in the city Wednesday to commend it for the Lit San Leandro fiber optic network.

Julius Genachowski praised city officials in an appearance at the San Leandro Library for successfully launching the network last year to provide users high-speed Internet connectivity desirable for transferring large data sets and images.

San Leandro-based software company OSIsoft funded the $3 million system, also known as the fiber optic loop, currently used by OSIsoft, The San Leandro Library and FH Dailey Chevrolet. The West Gate San Leandro shopping center will join the network in 60 days.

Under the public-private partnership, the city gets 10 percent ownership of the cables, which were installed in existing city-owned conduits underground.

According to city officials, the loop allows users to send up to 10 gigabits of data per second, 2,000 times faster than the average Internet speeds in the country, something the city hopes will help attract tech business from across the Bay in Silicon Valley.

Last month, Genachowski challenged attendees of the Unites States Conference of Mayors' winter meeting in Washington, D.C., to create at least one gigabit community in all 50 states by 2015.

"We have already done that with Lit San Leandro," said San Leandro Mayor Stephen Cassidy, who met the chairman at the conference.


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Ashly McGlone covers San Leandro, San Lorenzo and the Washington Township Health Care District. Contact her at 510-293-2463. Follow her at Twitter.com/AshlyReports.