EarthLink wraps up phase 1 of East Tenn. middle mile network project

EarthLink Business (Nasdaq: ELNK), the newly formed business unit of EarthLink, has completed Phase I of the Eastern Middle Mile Fiber Project in eastern Tennessee.

The network extension is being built with $9.4 million in federal stimulus funding via the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) Broadband Technology Opportunity Program (BTOP), which the former DeltaCom won last March.

Ready to deliver wholesale SONET intercity transport service, the new network expansion includes a 343-mile overbuild of an existing diverse fiber optic route from Nashville to Knoxville and the addition of a new diverse fiber optic route from Knoxville to Chattanooga. At the same time, EarthLink Business is building a diverse fiber network route from Knoxville to Blountville that's targeted to also deliver SONET transport service by the end of Q1 2011.

Designed to deliver broadband access services for various anchor institutions and to sell wholesale services to other service providers, the final phase of the 500 mile network, targeted for completion in the third quarter of 2011, includes the addition of five new interconnection points, including Cookeville, Oak Ridge, Cleveland, Sweetwater and Morristown, Tenn.

Of course, EarthLink can also leverage the middle mile network to complement the fiber networks it got from its acquisitions of both ITC^Deltacom and One Communications to serve its growing business customer base.

For more:
- see the release

Related articles:
Middle mile providers: Complementary, not competitive
EarthLink wraps up ITC^Deltacom acquisition
ITC^Deltacom expands fiber network, adds new leadership to wholesale team
Earthlink ups business ante with deal to acquire ITC Deltacom

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