2015-06-24 / Front Page

End in sight!

The end is in sight for the South Georgia Regional Information Technology Authority’s 160-mile fiber optic loop.

Construction of the $13 million project was projected to be completed by June 30. Earlier this week the installation crews of Trawick Construction of Chipley, Fla., working their way out Columbia Road, were within several hundred feet of their destination on the Highway 62 Bypass near the elementary school.

The fiber optic loop runs through Blakely along Magnolia, Bay and Smith streets, then out Columbia Road.

It will provide broadband and information technology services to seven rural counties in Southwest Georgia, according to assistant Albany City Manager Wes Smith.

The project is being built with federal funds. Half of it is funded by a grant and the other half a loan, totaling around $13 million. Smith said SGRITA is on the hook for the money, but Albany is on a management services contract.

Smith stated SGRITA would greatly impact education. “If we can work this out, we’re going to interconnect the six or seven schools in that region and literally have a seven region technology capacity of which the sky is the limit on.”

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