C Spire recently connected its first customers in Trussville to its ultra-fast, fiber-based Gigabit broadband internet service, continuing the telecommunications and technology company’s expansion in Alabama.
Trussville becomes the second Yellowhammer State city – following Jasper in late 2020 – to receive the game-changing services as part of C Spire’s FiberFast initiative.
The announcement was made at a press conference on Thursday at the home of Jerry Tortorigi, one of the first customers to receive the services in Trussville.
“The installation at my home went smoothly, and the speed of my in-home internet is better than ever,” he advised.
Trussville consumers now have access to C Spire’s Gigabit fiber-based internet, Smart WiFi powered by Plume, Home Protection Plan and digital home phone service. Residents who want to order C Spire service can go online here.
“We know broadband expansion is critical to Alabama’s future, and it’s fantastic to see C Spire making such a huge investment in our state,” said State Rep. Danny Garrett (R-Trussville). “The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted this need more than ever before, and it’s rewarding to know C Spire is helping us bridge the digital divide.”
With his city being one of the first in Alabama to receive C Spire Fiber, Trussville Mayor Buddy Choat explained that the municipality can leverage the new infrastructure to spur business development while also enhancing the quality of life for all residents.
“Trussville is known for its unique blend of small-town hospitality and big-city convenience, and C Spire’s expansion into our city can help add jobs and diversify our economy,” Choat remarked. “That helps everyone.”
Thursday’s news was made possible by a partnership between Alabama Power and C Spire that was announced in 2019.
Alabama Power’s existing fiber infrastructure is being used for what is called “the middle mile,” while C Spire will in some areas build out “the last mile,” which is an industry term meaning the final portion connecting the service to a consumer’s residence or business (the length is not always a mile or even close to it — it can be a matter of feet or several miles). This type of partnership between an electric utility provider and broadband services provider was enabled by 2019’s HB 400; that year’s SB 90 was also a crucial piece of legislation expanding broadband access across Alabama.
Alabama ranks 47th in the nation in broadband connectivity, and state leaders have recently formed the Alabama Rural Broadband Coalition — a group of community, business and governmental leaders dedicated to job creation, economic development and business growth — to change this dire statistic. The coalition in 2019 championed HB 400 and SB 90.
One of the results of the coalition’s work ultimately came to fruition in January, when C Spire announced a $500 million investment in fiber broadband infrastructure expansion in Alabama over a five-year period. The company’s deployment of all-fiber symmetrical infrastructure and ultra-fast broadband internet ultimately helps attract industry and improve Alabamians’ quality of life.
“We see the benefits in every community, especially attracting new businesses or playing a role in an existing business deciding to expand,” C Spire CEO Hu Meena commented. “That translates into jobs, and C Spire is happy to play a role in creating a brighter future for each community we serve.”
More communities, including Pelham, Helena, Northport, Tuscaloosa and parts of Mobile County, have already executed franchise agreements with C Spire and are on the drawing board for construction and service in 2021.
“We understand high-speed, all-fiber broadband internet service can be a game-changer for Trussville and other Alabama communities,” stated Ashley Phillips, general manager of C Spire Home. “Our ability to provide symmetric speeds immediately solves real-world challenges associated with interactive learning, remote work and telehealth applications. That’s good news in Trussville, Jasper and other communities as our FiberFast initiative continues.”
As part of its expansion efforts, C Spire is also is actively seeking interest from other Alabama communities and towns seeking more reliable and faster broadband internet service based on the firm’s crowdsourcing model, which relies on homeowner, business and renter demand to drive adoption.
“We believe our ability to deliver high-capacity fiber broadband services will help everyone, from boosting home and business values to expanding local entertainment opportunities to improving the quality of life for professionals working from home or students learning through virtual education programs,” Meena concluded.
Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn