Lumos completes buildout of its Project Ark wireless backhaul initiative

Lumos Networks has officially completed the buildout of its Project Ark fiber-to-the-cell (FTTC) network initiative and has already begun testing with one wholesale customer.

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Tim Biltz, CEO of Lumos Networks, said in a release that the company expects the transition of its FTTC traffic onto the Ark will begin early in the fourth quarter of 2014.

Wireless backhaul has been a growing business for Lumos Networks.

To date, the service provider has about 1,025 unique sites and about 1,350 under contract with wireless operator customers. Lumos said that when fiber is installed at these sites, these FTTC connections, at current bandwidth levels, will generate nearly $30 million in annualized FTTC revenue.

Biltz said that Lumos is on "track to meet its target for 825 unique FTTC sites installed by the end of 2014."   

It appears that momentum is on its side. During the second quarter, the service provider added 40 new cell sites to end the period with a total of 673 sites.

The company reiterated its guidance of reaching 825 FTTC sites by the end of the year and selling 500 to 700 unique and second FTTC circuits during 2014. The telco added that it is also on target to reach 1,500 FTTC sites within the next few years.

While FTTC is a key priority, the service provider is making similar progress connecting more buildings, including data centers, to its fiber network.

In June, Lumos added 15,000 buildings to its "near-net" list, which means that fiber connectivity can be extended to the building without the need for a public right-of-way permit. The company also added 33 on-net buildings in the quarter to reach 1,420 in the second quarter.

For more:
- see the release

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