Posted on Thursday, September 09, 2010
VERMILLION, SD (SEPT. 9, 2010) - SDN Communications broke ground today at Vermillion High School on a $25 million project that will bring increased broadband access to 305 hospitals, schools, government facilities and public safety offices in more than 75 South Dakota communities.
SDN was selected in December 2009 to receive the $20 million grant as part of the Department of Commerce's Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP). The company will contribute an additional $5 million to the project. The groundbreaking event marks the start of construction in Vermillion, the second community to benefit from the construction. SDN started work in Rapid City last month. SDN was likely the first company in the nation to begin construction on the BTOP initiative.
SDN's application was one of the nation's first 18 funded, making it among the top 1 percent of the telecom companies receiving an award. Vermillion Superintendent Mark Froke and Vermillion Mayor Jack Powell praised SDN for its application saying the result of the work will improve the lives of South Dakotans.
"In a world that has become smaller and flatter, connectivity to other schools and to the World Wide Web prepares our students for anything," said Dr. Froke. "Most importantly, it prepares our community so we can have an economy that can compete and allow our young people to remain here with opportunity."
Mayor Jack Powell said: "These advanced technologies will improve services to taxpayers at all levels of local government, but it also delivers a bigger broadband backbone to Vermillion, providing a new economic attraction to businesses interested in locating here."
The entire project will add 359 miles of new fiber-optic cable and will be completed by December 2012. Beyond Vermillion and Rapid City, SDN will begin fiber construction in Watertown yet this year.
To follow progress on the project, go to: http://www.sdncommunications.com/stimulus