July 22, 2016 – Williston, ND: Midco recently completed construction on new fiber lines running its services from Williston to Bismarck. The 106-mile network extension connects Williston, Bismarck and Minot – and provides a redundancy measure that would reroute network traffic should a fiber cut occur.
“It’s vital that we provide reliable services to communities, homes and businesses western North Dakota to help them thrive and grow,” says Justin Forde, Director of Public Affairs for Midco. “After experiencing fiber cuts caused by third parties in recent years, Midco wanted to make the investment to ensure the region has the communications services it needs.”
"North Dakotans have long been connected by strong community bonds. Today, these bonds are increasingly dependent on fiber networks that connect us not only to each other but to the global marketplace,” says Julie Fedorchak, Chairman of the North Dakota Public Service Commission. “This new investment by Midco is a real asset to western North Dakota and as vital to that region as the roads, pipelines and other infrastructure being built there."
“I really appreciate Midco’s investment in the state. Top-quality telecommunications infrastructure with dependable redundancy is essential for the long-term growth and opportunities we want for North Dakota,” says Randy Christmann, who serves as Commissioner for the North Dakota Public Service Commission and has a telecommunications background.
Care for the Environment
Midco took extra lengths to ensure the care and protection of the surrounding environment when burying the new fiber line. The company used state-of-the-art digging equipment to reduce environmental impact, especially in the North Dakota Badlands region where part of the line runs.
“We used a unique piece of equipment – a static plow that’s one of two in the United States. Midco wanted to limit how we impacted the landscape, ensuring a timely recovery for the areas where the fiber was placed,” says Erin Hayes, Midco’s Director of Corporate Construction.
As shown in this video, the special plow’s hydraulic capabilities on every wheel enabled digging even as crews were up against a fence or needed to go at an angle.
Midco’s core Northern Plains Network™ stretches 8,400 miles across North Dakota, South Dakota and Minnesota.