Ceremonial groundbreaking kicks off construction on TDS’ Janesville, Wis. all-fiber network build
TDS Telecommunications LLC (TDS®) is starting construction on its all-fiber network in Janesville on the heels of signing an agreement with the city last month. The Madison-headquartered company celebrated the milestone by hosting a groundbreaking ceremony at the Youth Sports Complex on Monday adjacent to the first build area. City Council President Paul Benson, Public Works Director Mike Payne, and City Manager Mark Freitag joined TDS Telecom President and CEO Jim Butman, Forward Janesville leaders, state representatives, along with Scott Zeitler, co-owner Unite Utility/Five Star Energy Service, TDS’ construction partner.
“TDS has offered residential and business communications solutions in Janesville for more than 20 years, but this will be the first time TDS will offer fiber-based Internet, TV, and digital phone services to this area,” says Jim Butman, president and CEO of TDS. “We’re thrilled to make this investment in Janesville’s future because the speed and reliability of fiber-optic connections cannot be matched with any other technology.”
In May, TDS signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the city of Janesville to bring fiber-to-the-home connections to about 30,000 addresses. The all-fiber, high-speed network will be TDS’ first in Rock County. TDS’ construction partner, Unite Utility/Five Star Energy, will begin work next week in the area just south of the Youth Sports Complex.
“We’re investing half a billion dollars in Wisconsin to expand broadband access, and more than $30 million is just for Janesville,” says Butman.
Fiber-optic technology is considered the gold standard of network infrastructure because it offers faster speeds and more bandwidth by using light to transmit data rather than electricity. When complete, the project will deliver up to 2Gig download and upload speeds for residents, and up to 10G dedicated connections for business.
Construction will largely occur in public utility easement areas as Five Star Energy workers bury conduit and cable. Residents will be notified in advance of construction work through a series of communications including a postcard, letter, and door hanger notifying them of the upcoming work. As with any construction project, there could be minor temporary disruptions, but contractors will restore any areas impacted by the burying of fiber-optic cable.
“Fiber-optics are the foundation for the future,” says Butman. “When you build a better, faster way for residents and businesses to access the internet, communities are transformed.”
Demand for high-speed data connections nationwide continues to grow. According to a recent Fiber Broadband Association report, only about 43% of U.S. households can connect to the internet via fiber. With this build, Janesville residents will gain that ability.
TDS, a 53-year-old company, is rapidly expanding its fiber operations in Wisconsin. The company recently broke ground on its fiber network in Eau Claire, is actively building networks in the Fox Cities of Appleton, Kaukauna, Kimberly, Little Chute, Menasha, and Neenah, as well as Green Bay and surrounding communities. TDS offers services in 32 states.
TDS will be hiring many positions in the area to support its growth into Eau Claire. The company also has a long history of philanthropy in the communities it serves, sponsoring local events, making donations, and giving its employees paid time off to volunteer.
Residents and businesses interested in learning more about TDS products can visit TDSFiber.com.