FCC, NTIA eye creation of model city for dynamic spectrum-sharing tests

The FCC and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) are jointly soliciting comments regarding plans to set up a public-private partnership aimed at creating an urban test city where dynamic spectrum sharing could be demonstrated and evaluated.

The plan's genesis is found in the July 2012 report from the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST), which advocated spectrum sharing as a mainline approach to spectrum management. The PCAST report also recommended formation of an urban test bed within a major U.S. city to address spectrum sharing.

NTIA and the FCC said the test city could include "large-scale sustainable facilities for systems-level testing in real-world environments across multiple frequency bands, including public safety and selected federal bands."

The agencies plan to promote this model city concept in conjunction with the Center for Advanced Communications, recently established by NTIA, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the FCC's existing experimental licensing program. The center was set up last year.

Spectrum sharing is seen as key to opening up a number of bands occupied by incumbent government users and others--including the 3.5 GHz band and parts of the 5 GHz band--for commercial broadband services in the United States. Other world regions are also eyeing spectrum sharing to open up various swaths of spectrum for commercial use.

Comments on the model city concept will be due from the public 45 days after the announcement's publication in the Federal Register.

For more:
- see this NTIA notice
- see this FCC release

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