UDWI REMC, SCI REMC connect members in Phase One of fiber partnership
BLOOMFIELD and MARTINSVILLE, Ind. (Aug. 8, 2023) – The Utilities District of Western Indiana REMC (UDWI) and South Central Indiana REMC (SCI REMC) fiber partnership is ready to connect the first group of homes and businesses in the north-central portions of UDWI’s territory.
In 2021, the two companies began working together to bring gigabit broadband internet service to around 200 unserved homes in the Freedom, Indiana area. A project map of the specific service boundaries can be viewed below. Those located in the service area are encouraged to sign up for SCI’s broadband services if they have not already.
“We are grateful for SCI’s collaboration on this initiative and hope to see even more opportunities for fiber partnerships emerge as we all continue to recognize the need for connectivity in our rural areas,” said UDWI CEO Doug Childs. “Providing members with access to high-speed, reliable internet is a top co-op priority.”
SCI REMC leveraged existing middle-mile fiber assets and partnered with UDWI to attach to their existing pole plant, allowing SCI to provide internet service in the most economical and expedient manner possible.
In 2020, Indiana announced the second round of the Next Level Connections Broadband grant program, which awarded $51 million for 50 broadband infrastructure expansion projects across the state. SCI REMC was awarded two grants from the program and utilized one of those grants to assist in building fiber in this joint venture. This partnership is expected to expand to additional unserved homes and businesses in the future.
“SCI REMC understands the positive impact of affordable, reliable, high-speed internet on rural communities, and we are proud to be working with UDWI on this initiative,” said James Tanneberger, president and CEO of SCI REMC. “We are grateful for the funding opportunities that have made this project possible and look forward to connecting the first UDWI members very soon.”
To verify service availability for a specific address, members can visit https://join.sciremc.com. If the address is not currently eligible, SCI will collect the member’s contact information and alert them as soon as the service is available.
In addition, members in areas not included in this fiber partnership are encouraged to apply to the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs Indiana Connectivity Program, which aims to connect residents and businesses that lack access to broadband internet service with service providers and assist in the expense of extending broadband to those locations. Owners of residential and business locations unserved or underserved can apply for consideration by entering their information into the Next Level Connections portal to initiate their interest in receiving broadband internet service. More information is available on OCRA’s website.
For more information about UDWI and SCI’s fiber partnership, visit UDWI’s website.
About Utilities District of Western Indiana (UDWI) REMC: Utilities District of Western Indiana REMC is a non-profit organization engaged principally in the distribution and sale of electricity in Greene and parts of Clay, Daviess, Lawrence, Martin, Monroe, Owen, Putnam, Knox, Sullivan, and Vigo counties in Indiana. For more information, please visit https://www.udwiremc.com/.
About South Central Indiana (SCI) REMC: SCI REMC (South Central Indiana REMC) is a not-for-profit electric distribution cooperative in south-central Indiana serving over 29,000 homes and businesses in Morgan, Monroe, Owen, Brown, and parts of Putnam, Clay, and Johnson counties. SCI REMC was established in 1939 and is owned and operated by the members they serve.
SCI Fiber was launched in 2018 and offers residential and business telecommunication services. SCI Fiber has nearly 10,000 subscribers with 2,269 miles of mainline and distribution fiber in place. For more information, please visit www.sciremc.com.