California has awarded several new contracts that will supply the materials necessary for building 3,000 miles of broadband infrastructure, taking the state one step closer to delivering affordable high-speed internet service to communities throughout California.
The California Department of Technology, as part of the state’s Middle-Mile Broadband Initiative, awarded contracts totaling nearly $225 million to two vendors that will allow the state to purchase enough optical fiber and materials to construct 3,000 miles of the network.
The result, according to California Governor Gavin Newsom’s office, is access to high-speed internet for 675,000 underserved Californians.
“Delivering broadband to all is essential to California’s success,” said Newsom in a statement. “Access to high-speed internet can mean the difference between launching a successful career and being without work. Once constructed, this network will be the largest in the world – and our action will make the promise of broadband for all a reality.”
Newsom added that the contracts awarded last week are part of a comprehensive and long-term approach to tackle broadband infrastructure deficiencies still impacting rural and low-income communities in California.
Government Operations Secretary Amy Tong agreed with the governor, adding that purchasing the material for the network is a critical first step to make sure California has the supplies it needs for the construction of the middle-mile network in the coming years.
“This fiber will be the backbone of the middle-mile network, which will bring access to unserved and underserved Californians so they can participate equally in a digital society,” Tong said.
Completion of the middle-mile network is expected by December 2026.