by Joe Schwartz
Topeka municipal leaders renamed the town Google, Kansas. Others across the country are forming Facebook groups and bringing tech gurus together hoping to be selected for Google's high-speed Internet project.
Chapel Hill, Carrboro and UNC are forming a joint task force, holding a forum and inviting residents to complete a survey.
The group is geared toward becoming a pilot community for Google Fiber, a program announced last month that seeks to build and test Internet service that's one gigabit per second — 100 times faster than what's available today.
To qualify, towns of 50,000 to 500,000 people must apply by March 26 and demonstrate that they have adequate resources and infrastructure to make the partnership successful.
The forum is set for 7 p.m. March 15 at Chapel Hill Town Hall.
Read next week's Independent for a story on what else local municipalities are doing to try to woo Google.