Fiber Ring on its Way to Georgetown - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Fiber Ring on its Way to Georgetown

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GEORGETOWN, Del.- The " spinning wheel of death" is something that many in Sussex County know well. That is because rural parts of the county have long struggled with slow internet connection. But this may soon change as the county has approved a new plan to boost connection.

On Tuesday, County Council voted to approve the installation and a five year contract for a brand new "fiber ring" to be built in Georgetown. This ring, which will cost $8,500 per month once it is up and running, would connect the County Administration building on the circle, the west campus on 113, as well as the Emergency Operation Center and the Records Facility, located by the airport.

County Administrator Todd Lawson said this will not only put the buildings on one rapid, interconnected network, but that it would also boost internet speeds by as much as 100 times.

"The fiber ring is what I would equate to a six-lane highway," said Lawson.

The immediate benefits would be to the county government, which would get access to the fiber lines. However, Lawson said that once it is built, it could be connected to other homes and businesses that want to use the service.

"This is a jump start," he said. "And because the county was the first to step up - we're going to be the tenant. The anchor."

Bruce Mead-e, the owner of The Upper Crust, said that he would be interested in tapping into the fiber line once it is completed.

"(Internet) has been slow," he said. "And spotty in areas. So it should be a terrific addition."

The potential benefits do have the possibility of expanding out of just the Georgetown area as well, said Lawson. He said the state has already announced tentative plans to connect the ring to Seaford and Lewes, once it is completed. This follows a state project that brought the fiber from Wilmington, down to Georgetown.

At the East Millsboro Elementary School, WBOC caught up with Duane Hill from the Indian River School District. Hill, who is responsible for the technology department at the district, said that this ring could open the door for more lines in the future.

"This is infrastructure that the county needs to start laying a bigger set of fiber around the county to start interconnecting everyone," he said.

Lawson said the county would be interested in connecting the ring to other sites across the county, such as pumping stations and EMT Centers, once the construction is complete. The construction to build the fiber ring is expected to begin this Spring, and to be completed by this fall.

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