Kingsburg high-speed internet project marks milestone

With phase one of the project completed, the community of Kingsburg is another step closer to high-speed internet access citywide

A photo of the bore machine used for installation of the fiber optic network in downtown Kingsburg, which will provide the city with high-speed internet services. (Photo submitted by Brian Griffin, chief marketing officer for Kingsburg Media Foundation)
Darren Fraser
Published September 8, 2023  • 
12:00 pm

KINGSBURG – Kingsburg’s high-speed internet project has made it through the first phase of its duration as it continues to roll out its way to completion.

According to chief marketing officer of Kingsburg Media Foundation (KBMF) Brian Griffin, the project, which broke ground in March, is on track to be completed by Christmas; meaning that all residences in the city will have the option to sign up for the new service.

“Ultimately, when the whole plan is put together, we should be able to reach most of the houses in Kingsburg,” Griffin said.

On Tuesday, Sept. 12, Kingsburg will host a fiber dedication event to celebrate the partnership between the City Of Kingsburg and Kingsburg Media Foundation as they work together to bring this project to the city. The event will begin at 10 a.m. at the Kingsburg Historical Train Depot.

PHASE ONE COMPLETE

This completion of the project’s first phase includes the downtown corridor. Eighty percent of businesses on Draper Street now have access to the service. There are 50 homes in the area that also have access, as well as other businesses off Draper Street.

“Phase two fiber is in, we’re getting ready to build out our end,” Griffin said. “We’re opening up phase two here, soon, and phase three right after. Meaning, we’re starting to hook up people in other places.”

Griffin said the project will eventually include the Sutherland Division and the two Fresno County Housing Authority campuses located in the city.

WE DO LIFE TOGETHER

Griffin said public reaction to the project has been positive. From his account, the community is interested and excited; he said people have been calling and waiting for the service and want to work with a local company that isn’t always fluctuating its prices up and down.

“They value the fact that we’re they’re neighbors. We do life together,” Griffin said. “We actually care about the community; and they, in return, have a different customer experience because of that. We have been very well received.”

As reported by the Times in July, Griffin said it is possible half of Kingsburg’s population – over 6,000 residents – may switch to the new service.

INTERNET ON A LARGE SCALE

The scale of the project is impressive. The infrastructure consists of fiber optic cable and conduit spread out over nearly 17 miles or roughly 90,500 feet. The construction process included directional boring, open trenching and micro-trenching. Strategically placed access points allow internet access for all homes and businesses via Wi-Fi; however, direct fiber connection is available depending upon location.

According to a buildout map presented to the city council, the project extends westward to Bethel Avenue. The southern boundary is East Clarkson Avenue at Kingsburg Cemetery. The northern boundary is East Kamm Avenue; the eastern boundary runs along South Madsen Street.

The city financed the project through a $2,200,000 loan to KBMF. The loan included $1,000,000 in ARPA (American Rescue Plan) funds. KBMF agreed to repay the loan over eight years at 4% interest, with the city earning over $374,000 in interest.

Darren Fraser
Reporter