Upgrading telecommunications access networks requires large investments in deploying new optical infrastructure, especially in terms of construction works and costs to reach the end-user, which seem only affordable in densely populated areas. By evaluating a cost-benefit analysis for the deployment of a point-to-point dark fiber infrastructure, this paper investigates how the economic risk of dark fiber deployment can be estimated and/or reduced in different settings. By applying the model on specific scenarios, which differ in area type, demand uptake, and revenue scheme, it is concluded that the business case is only viable in a dense urban area with an aggressive take-up. In the other scenarios, the paper investigates possibilities and opportunities to improve the business case and hence decrease the investment risk. Examples of this improvement include prolonging the planning horizon, ensuring revenue from the start of the project by performing demand aggregation, or examining where public funds might help.
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