SACS, the first South Atlantic Cable System

Cable landing stations in the West Coast of the U.S. link most of the trans-pacific cables westward to Asia, Oceania, Hawaii, Guam, also connect with the submarine cables reaching Mexico and South America, as well as northward cables connecting Canada and the State of Alaska.

In the U.S., cables and cable landings are under the jurisdiction of the Federal Communications Commission and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 [42 USC 4321-4327]). The U.S. Department of State also has a role. Cable Landing License is required to land a submarine cable in the U.S..

Virginia Beach is now a hot site for submarine cable landing, hosting MAREA, BRUSA, SAEx1 and Dunant submarine cable systems.

Microsoft and Facebook partner with Telxius to land its 160Tbps MAREA cable system at the Virginia Beach Cable Landing Station (CLS) site at 1900 Corporate Landing Parkway in Virginia Beach.

Telxius also lands its private cable BRUSA at the Virginia Beach Cable Landing Station (CLS) site at 1900 Corporate Landing Parkway in Virginia Beach.

ACA International LLC, the landing party in the US for the South Atlantc Express (SAEx1) bought 10 acres in Corporate Landing Business Park to build a cable landing station and data center there. 

Google announced to land its second private and non-telecom Dunant submarine cable system at Virginia Beach.

Seaborn Networks plans to extend its Seabras-1 cable system with a branch to Virginia Beach.

Why Virginia Beach becomes hot for submarine cable landing?

The main reason is a more diverse route across the Atlantic and a direct interconnection between Europe and the Ashburn/Dulles datacenter hub. The city has established two diverse terrestrial landing routes: Camp Pendleton, this route is complete and was built for Telxius’ MAREA and BRUSA cables, the second, Sandbridge, which is on the drawing board ready for future needs.

The second is the favourable taxation policies. In December of 2017, Virginia Beach slashed its tax rate on computers and data center equipment to $0.40 per $100 of assessed value, currently the most competitive equipment tax breaks in the U.S. 

Although NYC is still hosting most of the Atlantic cable systems. Virginia is hotter now, as Virginia State is the home of one of the US’s large Internet hub, Ashburn, Virginia. More than 16 large datacenters and more than 60 smaller datacenters in the state.

Guam is a natural hub and communication gateway for trans-Pacific telecommunications. On this 212-square-mile island, Guam arguably has one of the most extensive telecom infrastructures in the Asia Pacific region and most areas throughout the United States. There are currently 10 separate submarine cables with landing points in Guam, connecting Asia and Australia with the United States, via three cable landing stations in Guam -- Tumon Bay, Piti and Tanguisson -- allowing local interconnections to alternate routes and cable diversity. The cables landing in Guam include CUCN, AAG, AJC and Guam-Philippine at Tanguisson station, TPC-5, AJC and Pacrim West at Tumon Bay station, TGN-Pacific, TGN-IA and PPC-1 at Piti station.

There are 7 major transpacific submarine cables landing in Hawaii, distributed at 5 cable landing stations in Hawaii island, including

  • two cable landing stations in Kawaihae  of the Big Island, i.e., the Spencer Beach Cable Landing Station for the Honotua cable system and the other Spencer Beach Cable Landing Station for the Southern Cross cable system, and
  • three cable landing stations in Hanolulu island, i.e., the Kahe Point Cable Landing Station for the Southern Cross, the Makaha Cable Landing Station for the Japan-US CN, and the Keawaula Cable Landing Station for  TPC-5, Telstra Endeavour, AAG and ASH (American Samoa Hawaii Cable)