What is the impact on the mid-mile when an operator turn s up a gigabit network in the last mile? That’s a question that Vince Tyson, COO of Plateau in New Mexico, and his colleagues pondered and answered with an experiment. The result of that experiment was the rollout of a gigabit offering in the rural town of Clovis, New Mexico.
In the above interview, filmed at the 2014 NTCA Fall Conference, Tyson discusses the market-driven approach Plateau is using to determine where to build. Although this approach provides some challenges compared to the typical engineering-led build, Tyson explains that the customers, who are driving where the network goes, are excited and become ambassadors of sorts in promoting the service.
Financed through cash-flow, Tyson emphasizes that it works in this relatively dense area, but wouldn’t work in other parts of their rural territory without high-cost support; on average, Plateau has, on average, fewer than one customer for every 2.5 square miles. This telecommunications cooperative has been aggressive about figuring out how to get fiber to the rural areas and were winners of multiple federal stimulus awards to help with middle and last-mile projects.