Connecticut-based Charter Communications Inc. (Nasdaq: CHTR), which operates Spectrum cable service throughout central and southern Indiana, says it intends to spend $259 million to deliver high-speed broadband to unserved Hoosier homes and businesses.
The company says the investment will bring internet service to approximately 54,000 customers, mostly in rural areas.
A portion of the funding comes from the Federal Communication Commission through its Rural Digital Opportunity Fund auction.
Charter says it is planning to invest $5 billion to expand its cable network across 24 states, including Indiana.
“Charter’s move to expand broadband availability in Indiana will play an enormous role in ensuring all Hoosiers, particularly those living in rural areas, can access 21st-century online tools and services,” said Governor Eric Holcomb. “Their significant investment will complement our state’s own nation-leading broadband program to help create jobs, build businesses and connect more people at a time when so many are still struggling from the effects of the pandemic.”
There are several outside factors that could affect how quickly Hoosiers gain internet service, including utility pole access. Charter says with fewer homes and businesses in these areas, broadband providers need to multiple poles for every new home served.
The company says other entities, such as local municipalities and electric cooperatives, may own the poles which Charter would need to receive permits and clearance.
The telecommunications company says it expects to hire more than 2,000 employees and contractors nationwide to support the expansion, including local crews in state for network construction. Charter currently employs more than 400 people in Indiana.
Click here to learn more about the expansion.