Zayo Granted $153 Million for Middle Mile Initiative in Nevada

DateJun 29, 2024

Zayo, a leading global communications infrastructure provider, has been selected by the State of Nevada to build, operate, maintain, and commercialize the states new Middle Mile Network project.

Zayo will construct over 800 miles of the open-access, fiber optic network backed by funding from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) and the Office of Science, Innovation, and Technology (OSIT) to provide robust broadband access to unserved and underserved communities with routes through Reno and Las Vegas.

Project overview:

The project encompasses two major routes:The US 93 Route through Las Vegas with an investment of $43.5 million from the NTIA Middle Mile Grant Program and $43.5 million funded by the Nevada Department of Transportation.The I-80 Route through Reno with an investment of over $66 million funded by the Department of Treasury Capital Project Funds and the State of Nevada.The routes will connect over 40,000 unserved or underserved locations, including households, schools, libraries, community buildings and more.The public-private partnership between Zayo and the State of Nevada enables unique revenue-sharing opportunities that would not otherwise be available, enabling Zayo to operate, maintain, and commercialize the route to ensure the long-term sustainability and economic viability of the project. Unique to the State of Nevada, this sets a precedent for other states with similar connectivity needs.Given the growing importance of Reno and Las Vegas as major AI data center hubs, the project will also fortify connectivity between the markets with more bandwidth for faster and more efficient AI processing.

Lack of reliable internet access puts communities and businesses at a severe disadvantage when it comes to entrepreneurship, employment, healthcare and education. Zayo’s work in the Nevada Middle-Mile project will help bridge the digital divide in these underserved areas, said Bill Long, Chief Product & Strategy Officer at Zayo. In addition, as Reno and Las Vegas emerge as major data center hubs, these two new routes will also enhance connectivity in these areas to support increased bandwidth needs. Together, the project will support profound societal and economic transformation for the State of Nevada.

The routes will be built with Zayos newDigital Equity Access Network (DEAN)architecture which enhances rural connectivity by lowering the barrier to entry for rural ISPs to build last-mile infrastructure by providing pre-provisioned, dedicated fiber backhaul and competitive IP pricing that matches metro market rates. The new architecture includes multiple interconnection points pre-built into the network, making connecting to our middle-mile more affordable for ISPs.

I am thrilled to partner with Zayo to reach the States goal of every Nevadan having a high-speed internet connection that is affordable and reliable. The Zayo team has the right competence and expertise to execute this important project, said Brian Mitchell, Director of OSIT. OSIT is building a statewide open access middle mile network to bring better connectivity to underserved communities. This network will connect community anchor institutions and critical State infrastructure and facilities and provide reliable, affordable upstream bandwidth options to potential BEAD applicants.

This grant marks the latest middle-mile grant win for Zayo. Earlier this week, Zayo also celebrated the groundbreaking of its NTIA-funded Oregon-California-Nevada routeone of three projects awarded to Zayo as the sole national provider recipient of the NTIA Middle-Mile Grant Program.

About Zayo

For more than 17 years, Zayo has empowered some of the worlds largest and most innovative companies to connect whats next for their business. Zayos future-ready network spans over 17.5 million fiber miles and 144,000 route miles. Zayos tailored connectivity and edge solutions enable carriers, cloud providers, data centers, schools, and enterprises to deliver exceptional experiences, from core to cloud to edge. Discover how Zayo connects whats next atwww.zayo.comand follow us onLinkedInandTwitter.


This communication was prepared by Zayo Group using funds under award 32-40-MM339 from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC). The statements, findings, conclusions, and recommendations are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the NTIA or DOC.

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