Paris-based infrastructure company Meridiam will invest $50 million to bring high-speed internet access to Bloomington residents, following up on a letter of intent to aid Bloomington with the program, according to a May 13 press release. The plan would reach at least 85% of residents.
Meridiam will build and operate a fiber network, which allows data to move faster than wireless or cable connections. After a short exclusive period, Meridiam will allow open access to local internet service providers.
A key element of the program is the digital equity initiative, joined with a $1 million investment from the City of Bloomington. According to the press release, a combination of the digital equity plan and the national $30 Affordable Connectivity Program will provide eligible low-income residents with high-speed internet access at zero net cost.
Meridiam plans to begin construction as soon as the fourth quarter of 2022.
In the release, Mayor John Hamilton said Meridiam had discussed plans to bring fiber networks to other cities in southern Indiana, including Shelbyville, Martinsville and Columbus.