High Point-headquartered Lumos is bringing fiber-optic internet to the region with a $56 million investment to expand its operations, according to a press release Tuesday.
The investment will bring fiber-optic internet services to residents and businesses in New Hanover County and Wilmington, spanning about 655 miles. This includes portions of Wilmington and Carolina Beach, and the Ogden, Myrtle Grove, Castle Hayne and Wrightsboro communities.
Fiber-optic cables often replace copper and coaxial cables, and it delivers data through light, allowing it to transmit large amounts of information and have more bandwidth compared to coaxial cable.
According to Lumos, this new service will provide “a network capable of delivering up to 385 times faster upload speeds and up to 30 times faster download speeds than traditional cable.”
“Lumos remains steadfast in its mission to deliver uninterrupted, accessible, 100% Fiber Optic Internet that has the capacity for today’s Internet needs and that anticipates tomorrow’s,” said Brian Stading, Lumos CEO, in the release. “We are committed to providing New Hanover residents with the best connection possible, improving their quality of life.”
Lumos chose the Wilmington region because it likes to expand in growing middle markets that do not have widespread access to a fiber broadband connection, Derek Kelly, vice president of market development for Lumos, said in an email.
The Wilmington region is the company’s third new market announcement this year; the other two regions are in South Carolina.
Plans are to begin engineering work in mid-2023 with county residents receiving communication by mail when the work begins. They can also sign up for email updates at its website.
The fiber-optic internet is built from the ground up, with engineers and technicians building infrastructure in certain areas throughout the Wilmington region. Exact engineering plans and timelines are in development, Stading said.
Services provided by Lumos include fiber-optic internet, whole-home Wi-Fi, voice, and streaming services. Currently, it services more than 200,000 homes and businesses in North Carolina and Virginia.
Another local fiber-optic internet provider is FOCUS Broadband (formerly ATMC), which began a multi-year, $100 million project in 2021 to replace all its copper and coaxial cable with a new fiber-optic network in Brunswick County.
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