SOUTH BURLINGTON, Vt., Nov. 10, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- FairPoint Communications 1 announced today the completion of broadband expansion projects in 50 Vermont towns. The projects extend FairPoint's approximately 17,000 mile fiber optic network, which is the most expansive and diversely-routed fiber network in northern New England. As a result of these completed projects, improved broadband speeds are available to 18,300 locations in rural Vermont -- in some areas for the first time. "For many throughout Vermont, using the internet is an essential part of daily activities. Every day students go online to complete homework, small businesses efficiently capitalize on the benefits of e-commerce, and if you are looking for a job, you will more than likely be asked to apply online," said Beth Fastiggi, FairPoint's Vermont state president. "With more people using the internet, it is more important than ever to keep Vermonters throughout the state connected." Last year, FairPoint announced acceptance of Phase II of the Federal Communication Commission's (FCC) Connect America Fund (CAF), a program designed to support expansion and operation of broadband services in high-cost areas. Utilizing CAF funding, in combination with its own significant direct investments, FairPoint completed broadband upgrade projects in these 50 Vermont towns:
The projects completed at these locations will now qualify for download speeds of up to 15 Mbps 2, based on the distance from the customer location to FairPoint's servicing equipment, which is more than sufficient speed to smoothly stream high-definition video, browse the web or participate in online gaming according to FCC guidelines. Since April 2008, FairPoint has invested more than $900 million in its communications infrastructure and technology to bring broadband to northern New England, including building thousands of miles of new fiber optic network across the region. FairPoint's fiber-based, high capacity network offers customers a better, faster way to communicate.