C-Spire is bringing high-speed fiber Internet to The Town of Sumrall, having already completed some business installations and continuing to gauge interest for residential service.
Once a certain threshold of that interest is reached, C-Spire officials expect to begin engineering, with installation completed within nine to 12 months.
“We have a couple of businesses already utilizing C-Spire fiber, so the main backbone is there in the business areas,” Mayor William Joel Lofton said. “So we’re closer than we were.
“Unfortunately, it won’t be immediate, but as folks indicate interest, it speeds up the process with each account that indicates it needs service. So we’re making progress every day on that.”
Residents who wish to obtain fiber Internet are asked to visit www.cspire.com/home-services, where they can enter their address to see what services are available in their area and indicate their interest in fiber.
“Once they see if it’s available in their area, the option will come up to indicate interest,” Lofton said. “What we need all our citizens to do, if they’re interested, they need to go in there and fill that out.
“Once the number meets the threshold for C-Spire, the engineering process will begin. As it is, the town is broken up into several sections, so the more people within an area that sign up, the better we all will be."
While Sumrall does have Internet providers that service some portions of town, there are some areas that currently can’t be reached by those providers.
“That leaves folks in a situation where they’re having to go with some of these satellite companies,” Lofton said. “There just aren’t good options, and it’s been especially problematic over the last year with lockdowns from COVID.
“There are so many people working from home, so many children trying to do their school work at home. Systems that were decent before, you have so many people having to be at home, they just can’t support all the kids that are trying to do school work and all the employees trying to log in to work from home. They’re not able to sustain it, so there is definitely a need here.”
Lofton said in addition to residents already living in Sumrall, high-speed Internet also is helpful to attract those individuals who may be looking to move to town.
“It’s a concern,” he said. “As residents move in, that’s one of the things that they need to know, is that they’ll be able to connect and communicate with online resources.
“If we don’t have this improvement, it could be a hindrance to our growth."