David Allen, vice president of infrastructure of Maine-based GWI (Great Works Internet), is in an interesting spot right now.
A 14-year veteran of GWI, Allen knows the challenges of serving rural markets. Working under visionary CEO Fletcher Kittredge, he has helped develop the "Three Ring Binder," a middle mile network that will provide connectivity to many parts of the state that never had broadband access before.
GWI led the sponsor effort to secure a $32 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) grant to build the Three Ring Binder, an 1100-mile fiber optic network that will serve as an on-ramp for other service providers in Maine to extend broadband service to their customers.
Not surprisingly, the Three Ring Binder project was met with protest from Maine's incumbent service provider FairPoint Communications (Nasdaq: FRP), which argued that "a government-funded duplication of its own fiber optic network."
Ultimately, GWI prevailed and now the Maine Fiber Company in the process of building the network. To date, the
But Allen said GWI's ambitions stretch far beyond the borders of Maine. To connect its state with major Internet hubs in Boston and New York, the service provider established an agreement with established an agreement with Sidera Networks.
Over a 10 GbE ring connecting Portland to Boston and New York City, the service provider is deploying Cyan's Z-Series P-OTP in colocation centers in downtown Boston and Manhattan.
"Bringing that connectivity from Boston and New York up to the state of Maine and having it connected to the Three Ring Binder network we think opens up new opportunities," Allen said in a recent interview with FierceTelecom.
Outside of his work with the Three Ring Binder network, Allen is driving GWI's suite of custom cloud service business and hosted IP PBX for its business customers.