Editor’s note: In the first of a new series, “Fiber Transforms the Triangle,” WRAL TechWire Insider Jason Parker reports how Google Fiber is transforming Kansas City. Gigabit Internet is coming to the Triangle, too, through the North Carolina Next Generation Network which will be built by AT&T. So what can we expect? Insiders can access Parker’s exclusive report.

By the way: Don’t forget WRAL TechWire’s Fiber Transforms the Triangle conference coming up on Monday. At the event you will hear first hand what’s coming our way. Tickets are still available.

KANSAS CITY – Matthew Marcus is the first entrepreneur to plug into Google Fiber.

In a neighborhood now affectionately known as Kansas City’s Startup Village, entrepreneurs are leveraging the high-speed fiber-optic line to grow their businesses. The neighborhood is increasing in density as entrepreneurs buy or rent homes – Fiber is only available as a residential service – and yet the neighborhood has become a popular spot for tourism.

Tourists include Steve Case, who started his first day in Kansas City along the “Rise of the Rest” tour in the pouring rain.

“We’re the first place to get Fiber,” said Marcus, and it’s attracted a lot of attention to Kansas City. “We’ve had every executive through the village,” said Marcus.

Kansas City has high aspirations, boldly declaring that they’re the most entrepreneurial city in America. There’s certainly a sense of pride in the community, which in large part began with the installation of Fiber, said Marcus.

“Fiber is the catalyst that helped jumpstart the entrepreneurial community,” said Brittain Kovac, founder of HostelKC, which launched on September 1, 2014.

Kovac also happens to be one of the original entrepreneurs from the Startup Village, and was a contractor for Google as they rolled out Fiber in Kansas City.

Kovac and Marcus are not alone. Entrepreneurs are flocking to the Startup Village. What began with just three residential houses (Marcus already lived in the neighborhood) has now expanded to include more than 15 properties.

Brad Feld owns a house less than a quarter mile from the de facto headquarters of the Startup Village, now a popular coworking space for companies like Leap.it, a visual search engine,

A few houses down is Homes for Hackers, an incubator for early stage companies that also serves as a recruitment tool for Kansas City. Founder Ben Barreth cashed out his Roth IRA in order to purchase a house in the Startup Village.

“We were trying to do something totally out of the box,” said Barreth, who also coined the term “Fibertourism,” or the act of visiting a location to check out Google Fiber.

Barreth’s five bedrooms are now occupied by startup founders that agree to move to Kansas City from other regions. They live rent and utility free, with access to Google Fiber’s network. There’s also a crash pad specifically reserved for AirBnB guests, or the aforementioned “Fibertourists,” that want to check the place out.

“People love the idea of Google Fiber changing Kansas City for the better,” said Barreth, “and we’re lucky enough to capitalize on it.”

All week, I’ve been enjoying the benefits of Fiber. I’m staying at yet another house in the “Fiber Community” of AirBnB, and my basement apartment has impressive Internet capabilities. I’m streaming Netflix with no bandwidth issues, accessing my office’s server through VPN, and surfing the web with ease.

Fiber is certainly great for download speeds, but that’s not the most important feature for entrepreneur Brandon Schatz.

Schatz lives in the Homes for Hackers incubator and runs SportsPhotos.com, a community for sporting event photographers to sell directly to consumers.

He moved to Kansas City from Springfield, Missouri. Prior to his move, he was paying $400 every month for the best Internet service available. Schatz is attempting to disrupt the sports photography market, specifically within sporting events that have thousands of participants.

Think of the Raleigh City of Oaks Marathon, the Bull City Race Fest, or the Tar Heel Ten-Miler. Tens of thousands of people participate in races each year, and organizers often contract with a sports photography company.

Hundreds of thousands of high-resolution photos are taken each race, said Schatz, “there’s an incredible amount of data storage required.”

In Springfield, it used to take as much as forty hours to upload 20,000 photos on a 100 mbps connection. With Fiber, said Schatz, it takes forty minutes. And costs $70 / month.

Deciding to move between cities was easy, said Schatz, “if we were going to scale this business, we had to move to Kansas City.”

Not every entrepreneur is drinking the Kool-Aid.

“Google Fiber is really good at marketing,” said Nick Bowden, founder of Mind Mixer, on stage at the UP Global Summit earlier this week. He moved Mind Mixer to Kansas City from Omaha for an entirely different reason: the unified community.

In particular, said Bowden, entrepreneurship is encouraged and fostered by local governments and large corporate entities. The ecosystem isn’t solely entrepreneurial, said Bowden, it’s a creative community, with six major advertising firms.

“There’s often a lot more risk associated with agencies,” said Bowden, “than in our startup community.” It’s an asset, explained Bowden, because it enhances the risk tolerance of the community at-large, and provides a feeding mechanism for creative talent directly into the community.

What Fiber did for Kansas City, said Bowden, “was indicate that this was the place where the next generation should be.”

“Fiber lent credibility,” said Bowden, “this by association, means a lot to a place.”

While Fiber started as a catalyst for the community, said Brittain Kovac, “it’s now an afterthought.”

“Fiber was the big thing that helped set everyone in a central direction,” said Kovac, yet it’s the power of the community that’s moving the region forward and driving growth.

So what will Fiber do for the Triangle, a region where we’ve already seen major catalyzing events, where local governments are invested in creating entrepreneurial density, and where a strong creative class already lives, works, and creates?