AT&T, Google Fiber construction crews disrupt North Carolina residents

AT&T (NYSE: T) and Google Fiber (NASDAQ: GOOG) may be hot on the FTTH buildout trail in Raleigh and Cary, N.C., but it appears that construction crews for these two providers are not respecting residents' property.

A number of residents in both towns told the Raleigh News & Observer that crews cut off their water supply, cutting up their lawns to install fiber, or blocking roads without notice.

Mirely Baquero, a northwest Cary resident, said that while she is anxious to get the faster speeds that Google Fiber will provide, construction crews cut off her water supply when they began trenching a ditch in front of her house to install fiber.

"We have to pay the consequences now to get something better later," Baquero said.

Complaints about construction mishaps continue to rise in these markets. Noah Otto, the right of way services coordinator for Raleigh, said he gets about 10 complaints a week.

Another resident who's been affected by the fiber builds is Paul Denisowski, who lives in North Raleigh. He told the Raleigh News & Observer that construction workers marked the right of way in front of his house by spray-painting lines on his wife's flowers.

Although utility companies have to give Raleigh residents 14 days' notice before they begin digging up their streets, they don't have to tell them when they are going to make right of way markers.

 "The problem we had on our street is that we had no notice," said Denisowski, an electrical engineer. "All of a sudden, our street was marked up. It was a failure of communication."

Google Fiber and AT&T have made the Raleigh area a key target of their 1 Gbps FTTH rollouts. In January, Google announced that that Raleigh-Durham and Charlotte, N.C., would be amongst some of the new cities to get its 1 Gbps FTTH service.

Google Fiber will compete with AT&T, which said in June 2014 that Raleigh would be one of the markets where it will provide its 1 Gbps U-verse with GigaPower.

Besides Raleigh, Google plans to bring the service to Durham, Carrboro, Cary, Chapel Hill, Garner and Morrisville. AT&T will compete with Google Fiber in each area except Garner and Morrisville.

For more:
- Raleigh News & Observer has this article

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