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Optical fiber line planned through Livingston County

A 90-mile optical fiber line will be laid down through Livingston County as it connects Southfield and Lansing.

Three Michigan companies, 123NET, DayStarr Communications and Peninsula Fiber Network, say the network will enhance connectivity options in underserved areas.

“This multi-million-dollar joint investment brings state-of-the-art optical fiber opportunities to Lansing, Okemos, Williamston, Webberville, Fowlerville, Howell, Brighton and other municipalities along the path,” states a press release. “Underground construction has begun and will continue for approximately 18 months.”

The Lansing State Journal quoted Brighton City Manager Gretchen Gomolka as saying the city had not partnered in any way on the project.

“They will be doing it within the public right of way, their installation of their fiber at some point, but other than that they haven’t partnered with us on anything,” she told the paper. “I assume they are just going to sell their services.”

Gomolka said the city had received a Metropolitan Extension Telecommunication Rights-of-Way Oversight (METRO) Act application, which she said basically requires the companies to pay a $500 fee to access the right of ways.

Also quoted was Cohoctah Township Supervisor Mark Fosdick, who said residents have for a long time said they needed better internet service.

“(AT&T) U-verse covers a portion of our township. It’s not the best, but they can do Zoom meetings and other stuff. During the pandemic, whenever we had to do Zoom stuff, we would go over to our house and do it. We couldn’t even do a Zoom at our town hall because the internet was just so bad,” he said.

“Creating the best possible network requires multiple, diverse routes between population centers,” said Dan Irvin, 123NET’s President & CEO. “We have 25 years of experience building fiber along both traditional and lesser-used routes to create diversity and bring fiber into underserved areas. It’s all part of our mission to make Michigan the best connected on the planet. PFN and Daystarr are ideal partners in this latest expansion.”

Scott Randall, General Manager of Peninsula Fiber Network, states, “Continued investment in Michigan’s telecommunications infrastructure is both prudent and necessary. We’re happy to partner with 123NET and DayStarr to strengthen our mutual position as leaders in the state telecommunications industry and to help achieve the state’s goal of ubiquitous broadband coverage for all residents and businesses.”

The press release said businesses and municipalities along the route are encouraged to contact 123NET, PFN, or DayStarr for service availability and construction information.

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