PLEASANT CITY, Ohio (WTRF) — Spectrum held a groundbreaking ceremony today in Pleasant City, Ohio where they announced that construction is underway on a fiber-optic network expansion project that will bring gigabit broadband and other Spectrum services to more than 2,300 homes and small businesses in Noble County.

Spectrum has invested approximately $5 billion in unserved unserved rural areas, which includes $1.2 billion won in the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF) auction. This RDOF expansion will provide broadband access to approximately 1 million customer locations as estimated by the FCC across 24 states in the coming years.

Spectrum services are expected to be available to residents and small business owners in the buildout area beginning later this summer.

Local residents and business owners should visit spectrumruralexpansion.com to learn more about when their home or business may be able to receive Spectrum services.

Rated by U.S. News & World Report as the Best Internet Service Provider for Rural Areas in its 2021-22 ratings, Spectrum will offer a variety of broadband options, including Spectrum Internet Gig, featuring download speeds up to 1 Gbps, and its flagship Spectrum Internet® service, with starting download speeds of 300 Mbps.

Spectrum Internet Assist, the company’s low-cost broadband service for qualifying families and seniors, will also be available. Spectrum Internet Assist offers 30 Mbps speeds for just $17.99 per month. All Spectrum Internet plans have no data caps, modem fees or contracts.

Spectrum offers broadband, TV, mobile and voice services.

U.S. Rep. Bill Johnson stressed the importance of access to high-speed internet for economic development in rural parts of Ohio.

Congressman Bill Johnson at Spectrum broadband groundbreaking event.

“Having access to high-speed, reliable internet service is crucial in today’s interconnected digital world. What Charter is doing here in Appalachia and across the state has many benefits, including helping to drive economic development in rural parts of Ohio. Today, reliable internet connectivity isn’t a luxury, it’s a must,” Congressman Johnson said.

Getting essential services to those in unserved areas is being addressed through today’s announcement according to Ohio State Senator Frank Hoagland (OH-30).

“Recent events have highlighted the importance of reliable internet access and connectivity. The value of reliable internet cannot be understated; from telehealth, two-way video communications, work-at-home and remote learning. Spectrum’s network expansion in Noble County will help address the need for high-speed internet access and the opportunities that come with it,” Sen. Hoagland said.

Ohio State Representative Don Jones (OH-95) said many residents of Noble County have made the choice to live in a rural part of the state, but until today have had to watch others get essential connectivity services.

“Noble County is proudly rural, yet many of our residents have lacked access to critical infrastructure like broadband. Charter’s expansion through the RDOF program will help our community immensely – from teachers and students to farmers and healthcare workers,” he said.

Overall, Spectrum expects to hire more than 2,000 employees and contractors nationwide to support the RDOF and future rural buildout initiatives, including local crews in state for network construction. Spectrum currently employs more than 7,500 people in Ohio, with employees earning at least $20 an hour including target commissions.

Spectrum is a suite of advanced communications services offered by Charter Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ:CHTR), a leading broadband connectivity company and cable operator serving more than
32 million customers in 41 states