Flint Energies has announced its partnership with rural broadband leader, Conexon, to support the construction of a fiber communications network across a large portion of Flint Energies' territory. As part of this partnership, Conexon's internet service provider subsidiary, Conexon Connect, will utilize the excess fiber on this communications network to offer world-class fiber broadband (high-speed internet) service to unserved and underserved communities within the portions of Flint's service territory that the new fiber network touches.
Flint will not be a broadband provider, but will construct the fiber network to be utilized for our smart grid communication needs. Smart grid capabilities deliver benefits such as improved power outage response times, better load balancing and more efficient electricity delivery. To support rural high-speed internet rollouts across our unserved territory, Flint will lease extra fiber strands on this network to Conexon Connect, the company serving as the internet service provider (ISP) and delivering fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) service.
Under this arrangement, the design and construction of the FTTH network will be led by Conexon, with the network managed and operated by Conexon Connect. Internet customers will receive communications and billing from Conexon Connect. When Flint Energies members work with customer service, they will be speaking with Conexon Connect representatives. Flint members will continue to receive their electric bill as normal, while their fiber broadband bill for their internet and/or phone service will be sent (and paid to) Conexon Connect.
The initial construction area will focus on unserved and underserved Flint Energies members and will make service available to approximately 31,000 homes, businesses and institutions across nine counties, including Crawford, south Houston, Macon, Marion, Muscogee, Peach, Schley, Talbot and Taylor counties. The map to the right shows a sketch of the general initial fiber build area in green.
Flint will build its fiber network over four years, beginning in 2022. Service from Connect, powered by Flint Energies, will become available on a rolling basis as construction progresses. The network will be built in zones, or phases, with the number of phases dependent on the size of the target service area. Each phase typically takes about 12 to 18 months from construction start to customer installation. Conexon Connect will keep members updated as high-speed internet service becomes available in your area.
Flint is strengthening our electric system by installing a fiber backbone, but it will also give us this opportunity to help meet rural Georgians' critical need for high-speed internet. The time for us to act is now! Federal and State grant funds are available for this purpose, and we think those funds should be used in middle Georgia.
The Connect, powered by Flint Energies, phase map can be found at ConexonConnect.com. Select Flint Energies from the EMC drop-down menu on the top right and then "Check availability." When you enter your address, you will have the opportunity to view a build phase map and sign up for updates from Connect as the project progresses. Connect will reach out with sign-up access and to schedule installation once they reach areas ready for connection.
Different build phases are marked by specific colors. In some cases, the search tool may not find an address. This could be due to the limitations of Google Earth in extremely rural areas or if an address is not in the area to be built. Even if your address is not found, we encourage you to sign up for updates. Your contact information allows Conexon Connect to reach out to you if needed. If you have additional questions, you may contact them at 844-54CONNECT (26663).
If you're interested in more in-depth information, just click here to download a document about the rural fiber project.