Press-Republican

Business

September 15, 2013

Lyon Mountain broadband project in planning stages

LYON MOUNTAIN — Residents of Lyon Mountain and Chateaugay Lake are expected to have access to high-speed Internet by next summer.

The Lyon Mountain Broadband project was approved by the state in March. Nicholville Telephone Co., based in Nicholville in St. Lawrence County, won the contract from New York state to begin work on the project.

The fiber wireless project is in the “engineering phase,” which will be complete in December, with construction set to begin in the first quarter of 2014, said Joe Hockey, Nicholville Telephone engineering manager.

Residential Internet installation should be available by June 1, 2014, he said.

Once complete, the network will provide broadband Internet access to 476 households in Lyon Mountain and Chateaugay Lake, with coverage ending in Standish, he said.

‘PEOPLE EXCITED’

Nicholville Telephone is the parent company of Slic Network Solutions in Potsdam, whose president, Phil Wagschal, met in late August with Dannemora Town Supervisor Americo “Ves” Pivetta.

“He said everything’s on schedule,” Pivetta told the Press-Republican.

Residents have expressed their support of the project, he added.

“People are kind of excited.”

STATE GRANT

Nicholville Telephone CEO Mark Dzwonczyk said that after the company completes construction on the project, Empire State Development, the state’s chief economic-development agency, will reimburse it with the grant money it was awarded.

The state is contributing $976,000, which is 80 percent of the funds needed to complete the project, Dzwonczyk said.

Nicholville Telephone is providing the other 20 percent.

The high-speed Internet access could attract businesses to the area, Pivetta said, since new business owners could quickly hook up to the system once it’s complete.

“I think people are going to like it because the broadband affects a lot of businesses.”

The coverage will be only for select areas, Hockey said.

“The backbone cable that feeds these townships is coming out of the Malone.”

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