Pacific Northwest Gigapop


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Western Regional Network (WRN) Connects the West

New Connections Establish Regional Services to Improve Research and Resource Sharing

Regional optical networks (RONs) in four Western States have agreed to expand and share network services in support of advanced research, operations, and support of academic, economic development, and inter-regional services. Pacific Northwest Gigapop (PNWGP), Front Range GigaPoP, the University of New Mexico (on behalf of the State of New Mexico), and the Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California (CENIC) announced the formation of the Western Regional Network, a multi-state partnership to ensure robust, advanced, high-speed networking availability for research, education, and related uses through the sharing of network services. As a result of this collaboration among WRN members, we have increased the potential for shared applications among communities across the west. These RONs provide networking services to the following states: Alaska, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Washington, Oregon, and Wyoming.

“This new collaboration allows the University of New Mexico to reinvent regional networking by establishing programmatic services within RONs,” said Gil Gonzales, UNM CIO. “WRN will help UNM’s faculty and students gain access to private high speed networks from faculty offices and labs to our regional partners.”

“WRN provides opportunities to benefit all participants in obtaining better services and lower costs. Networking offers tremendous economies of scale, which the WRN participants will be exploiting for the benefit of their members,” said Jim Dolgonas, President and CEO of CENIC. “For CENIC, WRN will not only provide us the ability to offer our members more diverse and therefore robust networking but also the ability to acquire commodity networking at lower costs for our members.”

“WRN creates a wonderful new and flexible vehicle for us to work together as we explore the challenges and opportunities facing our communities across the region” said Amy F. Philipson, Executive Director, PNWGP.

The Front Range GigaPoP is pleased to be partnering with CENIC, PNWGP, and the University of New Mexico on this new, exciting endeavor that provides cost savings in the commodity and R&E areas, enhances opportunities via inter-regional networking, peering, and new arrangements with vendors, stimulates new research opportunities for our members, and improves resiliency in our Wide Area Network made possible through cost-effective back-up paths,” said Marla Meehl, FRGP

WRN will provide access to shared NLR, Internet2, Pacific Wave, and other regional fiber and IP based services for academic and economic development initiatives. This regional affiliation ensures a reliable connection to high-speed networks and research destinations.

The Western Regional Network will initiate services to partners in Spring 2010. For more information, visit:


Founded in 1889, The University of New Mexico now occupies 600 acres along old Route 66 in the heart of Albuquerque, a city of more than 700,000 people. From the magnificent mesas to the west, past the banks of the historic Rio Grande to the Sandia Mountains to the east, Albuquerque is a blend of culture and cuisine, styles and stories, people, pursuits and panoramas. Offering a distinctive campus environment with a Pueblo Revival architectural theme, the campus echoes the buildings of nearby Pueblo Indian villages. The nationally recognized Campus Arboretum and the popular Duck Pond offer an outstanding botanical experience in the midst of one of New Mexico's great public open spaces.

For more information:


The Front Range GigaPOP (FRGP) is a consortium of Universities, non-profit corporations, and government agencies that cooperate in an aggregation point called the FRGP in order to share
Wide Area Networking (WAN) services, access to the commodity Internet, national peering services, Internet2, and National LambdaRail (NLR). The current members are listed on the
FRGP Members page.

For more information, visit:


California's education and research communities leverage their networking resources under CENIC, the Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California, in order to obtain cost-effective, high- bandwidth networking to support their missions and answer the needs of their faculty, staff, and students. CENIC designs, implements, and operates CalREN, the California Research and Education Network, a high-bandwidth, high-capacity Internet network specially designed to meet the unique requirements of these communities, and to which the vast majority of the state's K-20 educational institutions are connected.

For more information, visit:


The Pacific Northwest Gigapop (PNW Gigapop) is a not-for-profit serving leading edge organizations and Research and Education networks throughout the Pacific Rim. We provide robust, highest-speed access to current state of the art Internet; Next Generation Internet services and technology; and the exclusive R&D testbeds where tomorrow’s Internet technologies are being developed. The PNW Gigapop is built to be the highest caliber Research and Education networking services hub in the world.

For more information, visit:

Gil Gonzales, CIO UNM
Western Regional Network


Amy Philipson