A frigid, wet winter slowed fiber crews in December and January, but the end of WK&T’s fiber buildout is within sight.
Current estimates predict work on the last of the main fiber network lines will be finished in mid-April.
“We can see the light at the end of the tunnel,” says engineering supervisor Sam Stitcher. “It’s like the song in ‘Smokey and the Bandit’ — we had a long way to go and a short time to get there -— but we will make it. It has been quite an experience.”
Through the first week of February, contractors had installed 2,050 miles of mainline fiber. The final mileage will be around 2,166 miles. That leaves about 166 miles to go, at about 10 to 12 miles built each week.
The work should be finished before its three-year mark, which would be June 6.
The majority of the work is now taking place in the exchanges near Kentucky Lake including Fairdealing, New Concord, and Cypress, Tenn.
“We believe the new service will be well worth the wait,” Stitcher says.
Folsomdale: All mainline fiber is finished, but about 40 drops to homes remain unfinished.
Hardin: All fiber work is complete and customers are being connected daily.
Kirksey: Installation of fiber in the “CO” zone is complete and the “Cold Water” zone is 87 percent complete. This exchange was expected to be ready for service installations in late February.
Lynn Grove: Installation of mainline fiber is complete. We estimate Lynn Grove to be open for service in late February.
Cypress: The mainline fiber is about 79 percent complete, and drops are 30 percent complete. Cypress should be open for service in March.
Fairdealing: Mainline fiber is about 83 percent complete, while the drops are 46 percent complete. Fairdealing is expected to be open for installations in late March.
New Concord: New Concord will be the last exchange to be ready for service. Currently, mainline fiber is 30 percent complete and drop installations have not begun. Service installations for New Concord will not be available until April or May.