UTOPIA signs $18 million contract with Pleasant Grove for fiber network

Pleasant Grove residents and businesses hoping for greater internet access and speed won’t have to wait much longer.

On Wednesday, the Utah Telecommunication Infrastructure Agency officially announced the city has signed a contract with Utah Infrastructure Agency (UTOPIA Fiber’s sister agency) to bring its fiber network to Pleasant Grove.

On April 13, the city council approved the partnership that will have Pleasant Grove built out with fiber access within the next two years.

UTOPIA Fiber offers digital equity, which means when it installs the fiber network the whole community is built out, according Kim McKinley, chief marketing director.

“Others don’t build out completely. We have a different model than other telecom providers,” McKinley said.

McKinley also noted that Utah has the most municipalities with fiber networks in the U.S. and has become a role model for other states.

With the support of Pleasant Grove leadership, the project will move forward. The project will be bonded by the Utah Infrastructure Agency as interest rates are extremely low.

“The unanimous vote to move forward with the approximately $18 million project came after months of vetting,” according to a UTOPIA statement. “Pleasant Grove now becomes UTOPIA Fiber’s 16th city to contract for the Open Access network’s fiber-to-the-home services.”

It is anticipated that construction will begin sometime in May.

“UTOPIA Fiber’s turnkey approach and remarkable reputation made them the clear choice,” said Guy Fugal, Mayor of Pleasant Grove. “UTOPIA Fiber is both shovel and operationally ready at a time when others are navigating logistical hurdles and crew shortages.

“UTOPIA Fiber has the staffing and the expertise to get the job done,” Fugal added. “Most importantly, UTOPIA Fiber has a loyal customer base and has been consistently hitting its revenue marks, which are the ultimate quality measures. We’re very excited to be moving forward with them.”

With Pleasant Grove being built out, that will make three contiguous cities, Orem, Lindon and Pleasant Grove on the fiber network.

Other Utah County cities with UTOPIA include Payson and Woodland Hills.

According to McKinley, the one thing the COVID pandemic did do was show the need for residents and businesses to have a high-speed fiber network.

UTOPIA Fiber provides residential speeds of up to 10 gigabits per second (Gbps), and 100 Gbps for businesses, both the fastest speeds currently offered in the United States, according to McKinley.

Pleasant Grove City — like every UTOPIA Fiber project since 2009 — is on track to be funded and grown solely through subscriber revenue.

“Like many communities along the Wasatch Front, Pleasant Grove City is growing quickly and many of its 38,000 residents are demanding better internet access,” said Roger Timmerman, executive director of UTOPIA. “While we’ve been delivering services to schools and businesses in the city for years, we’re really excited to now connect all of Pleasant Grove’s neighborhoods to the fastest internet speeds in the country.”

UTOPIA Fiber is a publicly owned Interlocal Agency that operates as an Open Access network. This means that UTOPIA Fiber builds the infrastructure and enables competition among private sector internet service providers (ISPs) via UTOPIA’s fiber lines.

UTOPIA is not just a product for faster internet services. Participating cities can also benefit from various Smart City applications that are enabled by the UTOPIA Fiber network including an early wildfire detection system, fast public WiFi, air pollution monitoring services, and more, according to McKinley.

Pleasant Grove residents and businesses are invited to visit UTOPIAfiber.com for service maps, build-out timelines, and information on how to sign up for UTOPIA Fiber services.

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