City Hall this week extended a deadline for firms to submit a proposal to build a fiber optic network, indicating the longer window will result in a broader range of submittals.

The deadline was originally Friday. The extension pushes the date to June 6. Matt Dias, the assistant city manager, said approximately five interested firms signed nondisclosure agreements with City Hall allowing them to learn more about the municipal government's existing infrastructure, including fiber optics and conduit. He said the information will assist the firms as they prepare proposals.

Two of the firms inquired about the possibility of an extension of the deadline, Dias said. He said no proposals were submitted prior to the extension.

Dias said the extension could result in City Hall receiving a greater number of submittals and ones that are of a "higher quality" than if the original deadline was kept.

Dias did not identify the firms that have shown an interest.

City Hall wants a fiber optic network built within five years that will offer fast Internet service to all residential and business addresses. Officials want a firm that can guarantee Internet speeds of at least one gigabit per second, much faster than a typical connection.

Dias has said the submittals will provide information like cost estimates, the logistics of a network and the possible construction disruptions.

He has said fiber optics would offer significant economic benefits and Park City would be one of the first resort communities with a citywide network. Fiber optic networks elsewhere have served as an incubator for technology firms, Dias has said.

For more information about City Hall's request for proposals, visit the municipal government's website, www.parkcity.org. Select "Citywide Fiber Optic Network and Services -- DEADLINE EXTENSION" in the News section. The direct link is: http://parkcity.org/index.aspx?page=23&recordid=820&returnURL=%2findex.aspx