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Saturday, April 19, 2008

Coudersport Firm Bringing High Speed Internet To Kane

Fiber optic network advancing to Kane

Written by Ted Lutz-- Kane Republican

A long-planned fiber optic communication network may be ready to operate in Kane next month.

Steve Zwerin, a Kane resident who works as the senior director for Zito Media Communications of Coudersport, discussed the project Friday at a ceremony at Kane Community Hospital. The ceremony was held to honor State Rep. Kathy Rapp (R-Warren) for her "long proactive support" for the "Next Generation" optical-based telecommunications infrastructure being installed by Zito.

Lines for the system now are being installed along Route 321 from Wilcox to Kane, according to Chris Keagle, senior director of operations of Zito.

The hospital and the Kane Area School District will be the first two Kane facilities linked with the system, which will provide high-speed Internet connections.

"The benefit of this facility will provide for business and job retention and allow new businesses to expand their operations in this area," Zwerin said. The network also will expand emergency management and municipal communications, Zwerin pointed out.

Rapp said she has been involved in fiber optic discussions for 3 1/2 years with area counties.

She said there's been "a lot of talk." She said the McKean County system, including the link to Kane, shows that officials here are "doing it."

"This is exciting to see this project move forward," Rapp said. She is hoping the network can be expanded into other counties in the area.

Rapp praised Kane leaders for "taking the lead and doing it." "I commend all of you for your hard work," she told the 14 leaders at the ceremony at the hospital.

Zwerin said the Zito fiber optic system will provide Kane with "world-class telecommunication capabilities generally available only in large metropolitan cities."

The system will provide a "baseline" to enable homes to connect to the system. However, no plans for home connections have been announced at this time.

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