BLYN, Washington—The Jamestown S’Klallam community of Blyn has been connected to high-speed Internet, the first leg of a major expansion of broadband service under way on the Olympic Peninsula.
Northwest Open Access Networks, or NoaNet, is overseeing the project, funded by two federal American Reinvestment and Recovery Act grants, to bring high-speed Internet access to underserved communities—including colleges, emergency responders, hospitals, libraries and schools.
NoaNet’s broadband network serves as the main “information backbone” for the area; telecommunications providers can connect to it to provide Internet service to their communities. Blyn is the latest community to be connected as part of a statewide broadband expansion program that, to date, reaches more than 170 communities.
“Connecting Blyn is the first step in what will be a landmark initiative for the Olympic Peninsula,” NoaNet CEO Greg Marney said in an announcement of the project’s completion. “High-speed broadband will spur economic growth, save lives and connect the local communities to a world of opportunities.”
The Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe is one of the first to benefit from the broadband expansion. High-speed Internet is a critical need for the Tribal Library and gives the Jamestown Health and Dental Clinics access to communications services which provide more immediate and specialized health care to patients in their hometowns.
NoaNet is a non-profit consisting of 12 public utility districts. It is leading the broadband expansion effort on behalf of more than 60 governmental, tribal and non-profit agencies. Its open-access broadband communication network totals 1,831 fiber miles, providing connectivity to 61 “last-mile” communications providers serving more than 260,000 customers.