ECFiber offers free upgrades to 400 Mbps for all schools, public institutions and libraries in its area

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ECFiber offers free upgrades to 400 Mbps for all schools, public institutions and libraries in its area

Wed, 05/06/2015 - 11:40am -- tim

The East Central Vermont Community Fiber-Optic Network (ECFiber) today formalized its longstanding policy of giving extra bandwidth to schools, public institutions and libraries. See list of qualifying organizations below.

“Thanks to our high speed infrastructure and state-funded dark fiber and grants that have helped interconnect many of our hubs, ECFiber has excess bandwidth (particularly during daytime hours) and we are pleased to be able to offer it to all these institutions, many of which operate under tight budget constraints,” said Irv Thomae, Chairman of ECFiber and Governing Board delegate from Norwich. “Although 400 Mbps is currently the fastest speed we offer, we hope to be able to continue to provide these institutions the fastest speed we offer in the future.  We hope to provide 1 Gigabit per second speeds within one year.” 

(For those who remember connecting at 56 kbps dial up speeds just a few years ago, 1 Gbps is 200 times faster than 56 kbps.)

In 2013, The Vermont Telecommunications Authority completed the 36-mile Orange County Fiber Connector that linked 5 of ECFiber’s hubs and allowed it to purchase bandwidth more efficiently.  In 2015 116 miles of additional dark fiber will be available to connect 6 more hubs serving 9 additional towns.  In 2013, the VTA also awarded grants that made possible certain network routes in Norwich and Thetford. This dark fiber and grants have made it possible to reach many of these institutions (see below.)

Recently announced grants by the Vermont’s Department of Public Services’ Connectivity Initiative will connect several other schools and libraries.

“ECFiber looks forward to serving ALL the schools, libraries and public institutions in our 24 towns once we secure sufficient additional financing,” said John Roy, ECFiber’s Treasurer.

ECFiber is a consortium of 24 towns in East-Central Vermont that have banded together to build a community-owned fiber-optic network to deliver high-speed Internet to every home, business, or civic institution in our territory.  ECFiber offers real broadband: symmetrical internet access (same upload as download,) speeds of up to 400 Mbps that do not vary by time of day or according to the weather - as well as phone service with unlimited USA and Canada long distance calling.

Partial List of Institutions to Benefit

Source: ECFiber 5.6.2015: