Horizon Telcom, Inc.
The economically distressed rural regions of the southern and eastern Ohio foothills lack sufficient access to fiber-based broadband service. Led by Horizon Telcom, the Connecting Appalachian Ohio Middle Mile Consortium proposes to construct 1,960 new miles of fiber, more than doubling the fiber in the service area and bringing middle-mile speeds of up to 10 Gbps to 34 targeted counties. The project also plans to bring high-capacity services to approximately 600 regional community anchor institutions, including 25 community colleges, 15 universities, 231 K-12 schools, 34 county 911 answering points, 212 healthcare facilities, and 34 industrial parks, with the potential to reach thousands more. Horizon Telcom states that more than 80 percent of community anchors in the area currently lack fiber-based broadband, while others lack the necessary broadband speeds to match their needs. The project also proposes to interconnect with the networks of BTOP awardees OneCommunity and ComNet, providing a far-reaching solution to Appalachian Ohio’s broadband needs.