County library systems cruising with faster Internet

CARLISLE – Comcast Business today announced that the Cumberland County Library System (CCLS) is using Comcast Business Ethernet services to link its system headquarters and eight regional library locations – including Shippensburg Public Library and John Graham Library in Newville – improving Internet access and digital library services for residents of Cumberland County.


The library system’s new network solution from Comcast Business affects many areas of customer service and staff support operations and provides faster Internet service along with faster access to the library system’s online catalog, membership portal, and eResource download center, while also providing improved access to remote online staff training programs and webinars.


Library Directors Susan Sanders and Mary Schoedel in Newville say the improvement is notable.


Sanders says the added speed is a bonus for library staff.


“I’ve noticed the difference in ordering library materials,” Sanders says. “The old program was so slow it was painful. This is much faster.


She says library patrons must be pleased, too.


“In the past, we were accustomed to only hearing when the Internet was too slow,” Sanders says. “The thing we’ve noticed is that the complaints have stopped.”


Schoedel agrees that the “slow Internet complaints” have disappeared.


Consisting of eight library locations and a system headquarters office, the Cumberland County Library System provides services to more than 244,700 residents across Cumberland and parts of Franklin County. Since the library receives more than 1,200 customer requests per day and its online catalog is visited approximately three million times each year, CCLS knew it needed to upgrade its network to deliver the best possible experience for individuals using library-provided computers at each location.


“Many of our customers were frustrated by our slow Internet speeds when using our library computers to upload or download documents for job searches, online classes, or when communicating with distant relatives. This sentiment was echoed by our staff as well, with most of them needing to visit the system headquarters in Carlisle to attend internal training sessions in order to avoid using slow connections for online training,” said Jonelle Prether Darr, executive director of the Cumberland County Library System. “Comcast was able to demonstrate that when there is no problem, nobody complains – and the fact that we’ve already seen a cost savings for the latter half of this year alone understandably makes us even happier.”


CCLS now has 10 Ethernet Network Service connections ranging from 100 Megabits-per-second (Mbps) to 1 Gigabit-per-second (Gbps) of speed from Comcast Business that link all locations, as well as its library headquarters to the nearby county courthouse. The organization also has a 100 Mbps Ethernet Dedicated Internet line that is improving Internet connectivity at its more than 300 on-site branch computers, and additional plans to add more services in the future are already underway.


“As a cornerstone of the communities they serve, libraries have evolved beyond just books to offering group meeting sites, public Internet access, research information and digital content, but they must offer these new services – and the technology to deliver them – within limited municipal budgets,” said Glenn Lytle, vice president of Comcast Business in the Keystone Region. “As a public library system with a cross-county wide area network, the CCLS deployment underscores the reach and price-for-performance of Comcast’s Ethernet services to help these vital community anchor institutions continue to innovate in today’s connected world.”



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