this all start?
Listening to our Community
Boulder Junction WI, 54512
A Wealth of Information
Business Development Another Key Response
to solve the
In late 2018, the ED3C began focusing on potential solutions. That action began a journey that has taken Boulder Junction a long way in 2 years and positioned itself to become one of a very few communities like it in the state……..to become a 1Gbsp Highspeed Broadband community.
The Town first had to understand exactly what our current services are and the technologies that were available.
Boulder Junction benefitted tremendously several years before with CenturyLink being successful in receiving significant funding under the US’s Connect America Fund (CAF and CAFII). As a result, CenturyLink buried 62 miles of fiber optic cable within the Town. That fiber was used to improve Broadband service because CenturyLink was able to deploy Direct Subscriber Line (DSL) service to
to customers. DSL is a stopgap effort to improve Broadband speeds, but CenturyLink’s fiber was essentially in the ground waiting the next phase. DSL works by converting light signals traveling in fiber optic cable to traditional copper wire to our homes and businesses to provide reasonable Broadband service. The closer one is to this conversion point (Node) the faster the Broadband. Beyond a mile of the node speeds fall off the cliff.
The town took a good look at DSL which stands, for Direct Subscriber Line.
DSL is basically one step up from"Dial-Up". It uses mainly fiber infrastructure, but 50+ year old copper telephone lines to get to each premise. It can provide speeds up to 100MB within a few hundred feet of a Node (which were implemented using CAF federal funding). However, speeds dramatically fall within a short distance from the node. Another issue is that many CenturyLink Nodes are now full, require power and cost $40,000 a piece to install.
DSL usually cannot supply symmetrical service, meaning higher speeds are only for downloading and can not support higher upload speeds. This affects anyone trying to Tele-Commute, Tele-Health, Tele-Educate, video conference, use cloud based software or upload large files. As a result, the Town evaluated potential suppliers and technologies and decided to partner with CenturyLink and have them build out their existing fiber optic network to homes and businesses in the Town.
The Review Process, Electors Meeting vote, and Board Resolution.
During the second half of 2019, 8 well attended public information meetings were held, monthly Town Board meeting updates provided, and final presentations made at the 2019 Elector’s meeting. Many Boulder Junction stakeholders were involved and supported High Speed Broadband (HSB). The November 14, 2019 Elector’s Meeting was a critical moment for Boulder Junction. After receiving information about the project two advisory votes were taken.
Vote 1 shows a clear direction from Elector’s to improve HSB. With an advisory vote of 99 for a HBS project and 15 against, Boulder Junction’s Electors spoke loud and clear.
Vote 2 shows a clear direction by Elector’s to light the town in HSB Fiber Optic Broadband over 2 years.
Town of Boulder Junction Board Resolution - Late in the evening of November 14, 2019, the Boulder Junction Town Board approved a resolution committing to $3.8 million to install Fiber Optic HSB to its homes and Businesses.
GRANTS & FUNDING
The next step in the process was to find funding outside the Town.
On December 17, 2019, CenturyLink and the Town of Boulder Junction submitted a grant application to the Wisconsin Public Service Commission for a High Speed Broadband expansion grant totaling $1,624,094 for a 2020 project bringing High speed Broadband to 745 homes and businesses in Boulder Junction. An additional $36,850 in donations and pledges had been received to offset Boulder Junction’s cost.
We got the Grant, now what?
Contract, promotion, sign up, and engineering details need to be finalized, but CenturyLink is planning to start construction in October 2020 with a completion of Phase 1 by the end of 2021. As areas are completed, High Speed Broadband service will become available to homes and businesses.
We are also please to announce that the Town of Boulder Junction was awarded a Certificate as a Telecommuter Forward! Community.
We invite you to review the progress of the all-volunteer team and their accomplishments in 2018, 2019 & 2020.
Over 1200 Volunteer Hours in 2019
Over 1000 Volunteer Hours in 2020 to date
Saving the town over $200,000 in professional service fees so far -
These volunteers have graciously donated their experience and talent for the benefit of Boulder Junction.
November 2018 - Economic Development and Connect Communities Committee (EDCCC) Focuses on Solutions
October to November 2018 - Information Collection
February 2019 - First Public Information Meeting with CenturyLink
February to November 2019 - Information Share at Town Board Meetings Begins
April to November 2019 - Stakeholder and Supplier Meetings
May 2019 - Meeting with Wisconsin State Broadband Director
July to November 2019 -
-Lakeland Times Begins Reporting on Progress
-Governor Evers Signs Budget with $48MM for Broadband Enhancement
-Surveying Existing Fiber in Boulder Junction Begins
August 2019 - Two Public Information Meetings Conducted with 60 Attendees
September 2019 -
-Request for Estimated Costs and Conceptual Designs Submitted to Suppliers
-Wisconsin Public Service Commission issues its 2020 Grant Application Materials
-Awarded TeleCommuter Forward! Certification
October 2019 -
-Analyze Estimated Costs and Conceptual Design Submissions
-Two More Public Information Meetings
November 2019 -
-Two More Public Information Meetings
-Elector's Meeting - Overwhelming Support for a Two-Year Project
December 2019 - Submitted PCS Grant Application
March 2020 - Awarded PCS Grant for $1.6MM Phase 1 Project
May 2020 -
-Boulder Junction Broadband Committee Formed
-Contract Negotiations Started with CenturyLink
-Branding and Marketing Design for Boulder Junction Broadband Initiated
June 2020 - Informational Marketing Campaign in full Development
August 2020 -
-Informational Marketing Campaign Complete
-Contract Negotiations with CenturyLink Completed
September 2020 - Contract with CenturyLink Signed
-Sign Up for High Speed Broadband in Boulder Junction is OPEN