The Town of Nichols ConnectALL Initiative is in the final stages as the Southern Tier Network marches toward completion of the multi-million dollar build out.
It was by way of a partnership between the State of New York, Tioga County, Town of Nichols, and the Southern Tier Network (STN) that this project is made possible.
The Town of Nichols was chosen by the State’s broadband department (ConnectALL) as one of four communities to roll out the Initiative with the expressed purpose of connecting fiber to the unserved and underserved population. Additionally, the County and Town dedicated American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds needed to complete the build out.
The total project cost is approximately $7.5 million and includes the required electric upgrades, fiber build, and customer installations.
Ben Rydzewski, STN operations manager, stated, “Nichols residents now have access to 38 miles of fiber, passing by nearly 800 homes and businesses. To date, close to 200 residents have taken advantage of the new infrastructure.”
Currently, the Internet Service Provider (ISP), FiberSpark, has partnered with STN to provide services on the Nichols Fiber Network. However, the open access model of STN allows for any ISP to connect to the fiber. STN is actively working to bring more ISPs on board, which will allow for a competitive environment thus driving more competitive pricing and options for residents and business owners to choose from.
STN Chief Executive Officer Jeff Gasper offered, “There are also opportunities through the Affordable Connectivity Program that allows for even greater reduced rates for those who qualify.”
The community is invited to attend a public information session on Thursday, May 18, at 7 p.m. at the Nichols Fire Hall for a construction update and to allow the public an opportunity to ask questions and learn more about how to sign up.
You can visit the project’s website, NicholsFiber.com for more information.