COLUMBUS, Ind. — Developers on Columbus’ new fiber-to-home network have selected an internet service provider (ISP) to administer broadband service.
GigabitNow will serve as the provider for fiber networks that Hoosier Networks LLC is developing in Columbus, Bloomington and Shelbyville, which are expected to provide high-speed internet to at least 70,000 residences and businesses across the three cities, city officials said..
It’s expected that Columbus residents will be able to sign up for service in early 2023, with final residents receiving service by the end of 2024. Community members can visit gigabitnow.com/columbus/ to learn more and pre-register to receive information about service availability.
“We are excited to partner with GigabitNow and these Hoosier municipalities to provide better, faster fiber-based connectivity, which will foster greater economic, educational, and entrepreneurial opportunities well into the future,” said Nicolas Rubio, Meridiam Chief Executive Officer, Americas, in an official statement. “This announcement is further evidence of our commitment to fill critical fiber infrastructure gaps and help shrink the digital divide.”
GigabitNow is a division of IsoFusion, one of Washington state’s largest privately held full-service ISP and colocation providers. It was chosen by Hoosier Networks for its “expertise and track record of working within local communities.”
Hoosier Networks is a fiber network utility provider established by Meridiam, which has agreed to create a fiber-to-home network that officials say will reach at least 85% of Columbus.
Columbus City Council recently approved a tax abatement for Hoosier Networks that will save the company 95% on personal property taxes every year for 20 years on $28 million in new equipment for the project. City officials also plan to use $250,000 in American Rescue Plan funds to help cover the cost of connection for low-income residents.
Senior Investment Director Nick Phillips told Columbus officials in July that Meridiam will initially have an exclusive contract with one ISP. The contract will be for five years with the option for two one-year extensions, making the maximum term seven years. After the initial contract period is over, Meridiam will then be open to forming agreements with other providers.
For more on this story, see Friday’s Republic.