The Buildout: GoNetspeed grows its East Coast footprint

This week in broadband builds: GoNetspeed breaks ground on $60 million network in Utica, New York; Ripple Fiber construction underway in North Carolina; Comcast wins in Maryland – and more.

Nicole Ferraro, Editor, host of 'The Divide' podcast

May 24, 2024

3 Min Read
Fiber optic cables lie on a construction site
(Source: dpa picture alliance/Alamy Stock Photo)

The Buildout is a column from Light Reading tracking broadband network deployments. This week we're tracking new grants, construction and service launches reaching over 116,000 locations across the US. Send us your news at [email protected]. Keep up with every installment of The Buildout here.

  • GoNetspeed announced new construction and service launches in Massachusetts, Connecticut and New York this week. In Massachusetts, the company started launching broadband services for homes and businesses throughout the town of Ludlow. GoNetspeed initiated construction on the $4.8 million build in January 2024 and will ultimately deliver service to 4,800 locations. In Connecticut, GoNetspeed started launching services throughout the City of Meriden, where it recently began construction on an $8.8 million fiber build. The Meriden network will ultimately reach more than 15,000 homes and businesses, with construction expected to wrap up this fall, according to GoNetspeed. And in Utica, New York, GoNetspeed began construction on a $60 million fiber build to bring broadband to more than 38,000 homes and businesses by winter 2025. Initial customers are expected to receive service as early as summer 2024, according to a press release. GoNetspeed is backed by Oak Hill Capital.

  • Ripple Fiber, a private ISP formed by Open Fiber USA, announced this week that it is expanding its fiber network to over 45,000 homes in Union County, North Carolina. In a press release, the company said construction in the region will be completed "by the end of 2024." Last week, Ripple Fiber also announced it is now live in Cramerton, North Carolina, in Gaston County. Ripple Fiber is in the process of building out its fiber network for 10,000 residences in both Gaston and Cleveland Counties. Ripple Fiber offers two speed tiers: 250 Mbit/s and 1 Gbit/s.

  • Charter's Spectrum launched services associated with its Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF) winnings in South Carolina and Florida this week. In South Carolina, Spectrum services launched for 530 homes and businesses in Orangeburg County, and 130 homes and businesses in Kershaw County. And in Florida, the company's services went live for more than 900 homes and businesses in parts of Flagler County, including Andalusia, Bimini and Daytona North.

  • The state of Maryland awarded $19.5 million in broadband grants through its "Home Stretch for Difficult to Serve Properties" program. The awards, which went to 18 jurisdictions, are expected to connect 2,400 households. The biggest winner this round was Comcast, which won individual and shared grants in 11 out of the 18 awarded counties and jurisdictions, including the city of Baltimore, according to information from the state shared with Light Reading. Charter's Spectrum and Breezeline were also among the awarded providers, alongside local providers Choptank Fiber (the fiber broadband arm of the Choptank Electric Cooperative), ThinkBig, Simple Fiber and others. Funding for these grants came from the capital projects fund, via the American Rescue Plan, allocated by the US Treasury Department. Of the awarded jurisdictions, 17 received $1.1 million, and one (Kent County, with ISP ThinkBig) received $929,100.

  • Ritter Communications is in the process of constructing a $5.3 million privately funded fiber network in the Arkansas neighborhoods of Beebe, Kensett and Judsonia. In a press release, the company said the project is slated for completion "this summer." Ritter, which is owned by private equity firm Grain Management, declined to disclose the number of locations covered by this build.

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The Buildout

About the Author(s)

Nicole Ferraro

Editor, host of 'The Divide' podcast, Light Reading

Nicole covers broadband, policy and the digital divide. She hosts The Divide on the Light Reading Podcast and tracks broadband builds in The Buildout column. Some* call her the Broadband Broad (*nobody).

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