Chesterton Tribune



NITCO looks to install fiber optic on Catkin Circle

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To date, NITCO--the administrator of the Town of Chesterton’s fiber optic network--has signed up 84 small businesses for fiber optic service. Of these, 67 already have had the service installed, while the remaining 17 are waiting for their current provider contracts to expire.

Now NITCO is looking to expand the TV/Internet/voice service to a residential neighborhood: namely, to the 42 homes on Catkin Circle in the Tamarack subdivision.

So NITCO Senior Vice President Tom Carroll reported at the Redevelopment Commission meeting Monday evening.

Here’s the trick, though: in order for the residential extension to make economic sense, half of the 42 homes need to want fiber optic. “This particular area seems very viable to us,” Carroll told the commission, partly because the fiber optic line runs along 1100N immediately to the north. “But we’ll need 50 percent of the homes to commit. We need that kind of take to make the project viable.”

At the moment, four homeowners are on board. Seventeen more need to step up. NITCO will be doing some marketing in the neighborhood along with follow-up calls, Carroll noted.

“I’m hoping that the neighborhood will respond favorably,” Member Jeff Trout remarked. “It would be good for the town.”

Call NITCO at (219) 996-2981.

Meanwhile, Town Engineer Mark O’Dell reported that the town is close to submitting a permit application to Amtrak for directional boring beneath its right-of-way in Porter, to complete the fiber optic connection to Yost Elementary School. Paperwork on the insurances needed--including $650 worth of professional railroad liability insurance--is currently being prepared. Once the application is submitted, O’Dell said, Amtrak should issue the permit within 30 days.

Carroll noted that its contractor, CSU Inc., will be ready to break ground as soon as the permit is received.



Posted 6/24/2020




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