We’re going to get busy!
In September of 2019, we announced our plans to invest $100 million over a ten year period, which includes bringing high-speed fiber-optic internet to most of our DSL customers.
It can feel like forever when you are waiting for something you really want, particularly when you know someone else already has it or is getting sooner than you. We get it, and promise that your high speed, fiber optic internet will be worth the wait. We appreciate your enthusiasm and your patience, and here are some things you need to know first.
Timing is of the essence.
Our goal is to bring you Silver Star fiber-optic service as quickly as possible, but we must begin somewhere. Given the vastness of our serving areas in both Idaho and Wyoming, this multi-year project may take some time to get to you.
The areas where we will build out fiber will be known as “Fiberhoods.” Some Fiberhoods will take longer to get to than others due to obligations we have to the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) to deliver fiber service to specific areas within a given year.
We want to know if you are as excited as we are!
We have mapped out the initial Fiberhoods and have opened the opportunity for you to share your interest in getting fiber in your neighborhood. Once enough residents sign-up for a Fiberhood, we will begin construction there first. The Sign-up phase is an opportunity for you to choose your internet package. This is also an opportunity to determine the level of commitment by a prospective Fiberhood. Once we decide to build in your area, we will contact everyone who has signed up with an estimation as to when you can expect construction to begin.
Construction can take time.
Several circumstances that can impact our timing. Sometimes projects can take a while longer than initially planned. We will be placing new fiber in the ground and there is a tremendous amount of dirt to cover, placing one foot of fiber at a time.
Before the construction process, we spend a great deal of time developing a construction plan for your community, including working with local government on permitting and other matters. Once a Fiberhood qualifies for service, there is additional design, engineering, and staking work to complete. You can help us at this stage by working with us to get your staking sheet approved as quickly as possible – we can’t place fiber on your property until this happens. Our goal is to do all construction in a neighborhood at once so the sooner everyone has their paperwork in order, the sooner construction can begin.
Underground research needs to happen.
Before we can place the fiber in the ground or bring in construction equipment such as boring or trenching machines, we’ll need to figure out where the existing underground wires, pipes, water lines, etc., are. We follow all the required procedures for having the locations marked where each utility line is supposed to be. The marking aids our construction crews to specify where they need to dig and what to avoid. You will see yellow, orange, red or blue, markings on sidewalks, streets, or even on your lawn. These are called locating marks or “locates”.
Private property access rights must be granted.
In some cases, approval must be obtained from private property owners or public property administrators in order to place fiber through or to a particular area.
Digging can be disruptive.
We realize that construction can be disruptive. Silver Star attempts to minimize disruption in your town and neighborhood.
Hurry up and wait.
There are some things that can slow us down even under the best conditions such as:
- It’s no secret that our region has unpredictable weather. While most of our construction happens in the spring, summer and fall, we still work outside even when the weather doesn’t cooperate, which can slow things down or even put the construction on hold.
- Some areas may have local restrictions where permits are only valid during certain days of the week or during certain hours. This may constrict the times that crews can work. We may extend crew work hours or even have them work on weekends, but we need to comply with local restrictions.
Why is my neighbor getting fiber installed before me?
Sometimes, one or two homes on a road won’t get installed until weeks or months after the rest of the road is installed. This can be puzzling to residents, so your patience is appreciated.
While we wish we could prepare for every unexpected obstacle, sometimes there are unforeseen situations or unique circumstances at a particular location that can affect our ability to install fiber.
When we can be, we’re very efficient!
While there are the occasional obstructions and interruptions, we have learned a great deal since our first fiber-to-the-home buildouts began in 2004 and we have evolved and streamlined our construction processes.
- To adhere to our deadlines, we have designed the Fiberhood sign-up and construction process to maximize efficiency. There are sign-up deadlines that we stick to so we can build in a particular Fiberhood and then move on to work in the next one.
- We strategically build out towns and neighborhoods, deploying resources where they can be best utilized. Sometimes we bypass streets that may be temporarily inaccessible and come back to them later. This helps us keeps the construction process moving, keeps our crews busy, and makes the whole process go as swiftly as possible.
- We plan to begin construction as soon as sign-ups are closed, so we plan well in advance and coordinate with local towns and neighborhoods as much as possible.
When it is time to connect your home with high-speed internet, we will contact you to schedule your installation appointment, so please be sure to check the email address that you put on the sign-up form and to whitelist our email address.