City Panel Approves Cable Deal

Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer


A New York City panel unanimously approved a new cable television deal with Time Warner Cable and Cablevision.

The agreement calls for up to five additional channels for public access centers citywide, including two HD channels for MNN that will run over the Time Warner Cable system in the borough of Manhattan.

The pact, which was approved by City’s Franchise and Concession Review Committee (FCRC) on August 10, also calls for the cable giants to finance WiFi in 32 parks, build out 40 public computing centers citywide and provide free internet access in some of the City’s public libraries.

"We won a terrific victory for New York’s cable subscribers that will benefit the prosperity and civic life of the City at large," said FCRC member Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, whose leadership was critical in moving the deal forward. "This agreement provides multiple public goods that will translate into increased access to broadband services and information, greater interconnectedness, and will modernize telecommunications in New York City."

Each of the City’s five borough president’s approved the new deal, which included funding and channel capacity agreements for the City’s five public access centers. These include BronxNet, Brooklyn Community Access Television (BCAT), Queen’s Public Television (QPTV) and Staten Island Community Television (SICTV).

"This historic agreement will mean increased opportunity for all New Yorkers to access new media technologies," said Dan Coughlin, the Executive Director of Manhattan Neighborhood Network (MNN), adding that MNN will be opening a new state-of-the-art community media facility in East Harlem next year.

The City’s Educational and Government channels are also slated to roll out new cablecast channels, including an HD channel.

Here is some press on the deal:

The New York Times

Wall Street Journal

Crain's New York