Girard will have the distinction of becoming the first 100% fiber to the home (FTTH) city in Crawford County. As reported at last year’s annual meeting, the Coop was approved for a $59.8 million-dollar loan through the US Department of Agriculture/Rural Utilities Service. This loan will bring FTTH to 100% of 17 of our exchanges over the next 5 years. Combined with the fiber put in over the past few years, this will result in about 75% of our company being covered by FTTH infrastructure.
This project will bring gigabit connectivity – 1,000 Mbps internet speed – a claim very few communities can make. In addition to ultra-fast internet speeds, FTTH has proven to provide other significant benefits. Students utilizing iPads at school will now have that same connectivity at home. Businesses can utilize the very fast upload and download speeds to transfer files and even create telecommuting opportunities for their employees. FTTH has even been shown to increase property values and can help to reduce population decline.
MP Nexlevel, LLC out of Maple Lake, MN was the winning bidder for the project. Work is scheduled to begin in Girard on August 14th. The Arma portion of the project will start sometime in early 2018. We are very proud of our Coop’s history and heritage of bringing the latest technologies to our members. We know you will enjoy the speed, reliability and flexibility FTTH will provide.