Sovernet gets grant to build Vermont-based middle mile network

Sovernet, the Vermont-based subsidiary of Atlantic Tele-Network (NASDAQ: ATNI), is getting $33.4 million broadband courtesy of the National Telecommunications and Information Administrations (NTIA) Broadband Technology Opportunities Telecommunications Authority (VTA).

With this new cash in hand, Sovernet will is going to develop, own, maintain and operate Vermont FiberConnect, a 773 mile fiber-based middle mile network in southern, central, and northeastern Vermont with up to 1 Gbps network connections.

The new middle mile network--a major focus of much of the NTIA's initial broadband stimulus grant awards--will connect over 340 community institutions include State owned buildings and all K-12 schools and libraries that opted to participate in the middle mile project in addition to area hospitals, state and community colleges, and cellular towers.

In addition Sovernet's own $11 million investment, Sovernet will get another $2 million grant from the state of Vermont through VTA and the Gates Foundation made a grant award of $400,000.

This is the second middle mile award that Sovernet has wrapped up in the past year. Last December, Sovernet subsidiary Albany, NY-based ION (Independent Optical Networks) won a $39.7 million broadband stimulus grant to expand its own middle mile network serving independent telcos in New York State.

For more:
- see the release here

Related articles:
Middle mile providers: Complementary, not competitive
Independent Optical Networks lights up new opportunities
FierceTelecom 2010 Prediction: Middle mile march
Comptel 2010: RCN gets ready to build Open Cape Network

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