CenturyLink picks up former Qwest's fiber slack in Oregon

CenturyLink (NYSE: CTL) is giving Oregon residents and businesses something that it never had before--a higher speed broadband connection--by building out fiber to support its growing Fiber to the Node (FTTN) initiative throughout the state.

Under the plan, CenturyLink will invest at least $45 million to expand the state's broadband network infrastructure over the next five years.

The fiber build initiative was one of the mandates it had to meet with the state regulators to get its acquisition of Qwest approved.

Of course, meeting this goal in areas like Medford, Ore. won't be without its unique challenges. One of the key issues is that much of the conduit infrastructure that carries its copper lines has not been updated for decades.

"It's a tedious project," said Doug Patterson, CenturyLink's regional operations manager, in a Mail Tribune article. "Basically, we're going manhole to manhole, pulling lines. The conduits we're working with have been in there for 50, 60 or, in some cases, 70 years. Some are 10 feet deep and some are 2 feet deep. Some are broken because they used to make them out of clay. It's a slow process."

The service provider said the fiber expansion effort will be carried throughout 2016 and possibly into 2017.

Delivering broadband services in a hybrid copper/fiber FTTN fashion, CenturyLink said it will be able to deliver up to 12 Mbps and expand the amount of customers who can get 40 Mbps speeds depending on the condition of the last mile copper plant from the remote terminal (RT) to the home.

Once fiber reaches a neighborhood, CenturyLink lines deliver broadband at speeds of 12 megabits per second or more and tripling the number of lines that can get ultra-fast speeds of 40 megabits or more.

For more:
- The Mail Tribune has this article

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