Federal Grants Bring World’s Fastest Internet to Rural Acadiana

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LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) – The entire nation turned to St. Landry Parish this week as the vice president traveled there to kick off a federal broadband expansion, but other areas of Acadiana are also getting internet subsidies high speed.

Between two recent grants, LUS Fiber in Lafayette will lay about one point three million feet of fiber optic cable across seven parishes, and they’re just one of the smallest telecommunications companies in the race to provide quality internet service. .

“If we don’t take advantage of it now, it will never be like this again” Ryan Meche, Director of LUS Fiber says of what he calls an “unprecedented” investment.

Billions of dollars are being invested by the federal and state governments to connect every part of the country with the fastest possible connections, which currently is fiber optics.

“We’re literally placing little strands of glass in the ground that the light will be able to pass through,” Meche explained. “It stands the test of time. There is no theoretical limit to the amount of bandwidth that can actually pass through it. Right now we offer up to 10 gigabits per second, which is the fastest in the world.

Thanks to the financing of the American rescue plan, the fastest speed in the world will stretch from the heart of Acadiana to its edges.

“Going through Duson, Church Point, Basile, (Mamou), Eunice, all the way to Ville Platte which currently has the fifth lowest speed in the country,” Meche said.

LUS Fiber told News 10 that it hopes to provide service to every household within 500 to 1,000 feet of this path, after it connects in Ville Platte, so everyone can have the same opportunities to attract large companies and working from home.

“It’s transformative. In some of these areas, they can’t even operate credit card machines. In other areas, their 911 center goes down. So it’s not that it’s It’s about slow speeds, it’s not even available sometimes,” Meche said.

Like many industries during the pandemic, supply chain issues, particularly with resin, have slowed broadband expansion. Some grants have up to 10 years to complete. Meche expects federal proceedings to limit their start date to one year, but once LUS Fiber begins expanding to Ville Platte, it will take a year.

“All of these areas that have been asking for it for years and years, we’ve had the opportunity to be able to scale up these grants and these partnerships to help serve them,” Meche concluded.

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