Internet Service Providers & Areas of Coverage
A number of companies provide internet services to at least some portion of Belfast; these include wired internet providers Charter Spectrum, Consolidated Communications, GWI, LCI, OTELCO, and UniTel; and wireless internet providers Bluestreak, HughesNet, Redzone Wireless, and Viasat Internet.
The ConnectME Authority has an online map showing the internet service providers offering wired and wireless internet to a particular address and the range of speeds for those services. However, please note that this map may not reflect the most current coverage information, and potential customers are still likely to need to directly communicate with an internet service provider to confirm whether or not internet service is available at their particular location.
'Three Ring Binder' Network
The Maine Fiber Company was formed to oversee the construction, maintenance, and leasing of a 1,100-mile, high-capacity fiber optic network in the state of Maine, known as the 'Three Ring Binder.' This network is a true 'dark fiber' asset and provides the fiber for telecom carriers to provide service to their customers. The Maine Fiber Company leases this fiber on an open-access, non-discriminatory basis, meaning that any responsible entity may lease fiber along the route, including any institutional customer, telecom carrier, or internet service provider, and that all users will have access at the same pricing and substantially similar terms and conditions relative to their use of the network. More than 7 miles of the network's southern ring run through Belfast's east side and through its downtown, along portions of Searsport Avenue, Robbins Road, High Street, Church Street, and Northport Avenue, with additional spurs extending out along Belmont Avenue and Lincolnville Avenue.
Community Broadband Planning Grant
The City of Belfast was selected by the ConnectME Authority as a recipient of a Community Broadband Planning Grant in the amount of $15,000. The City of Belfast has used these funds to create a Community Technology Plan. This plan included: the defining of community broadband needs and goals; network planning and financial analysis; the assessing of municipal procedures, policies, rules, and ordinances; digital inclusion and adoption; economic impacts; and public outreach. Axiom Technologies, who has extensive experience in these planning efforts, having already partnered with over a dozen communities, regions, and counties across rural Maine, has been retained by the City to oversee the implementation of this grant. The City of Belfast was represented in this planning effort by members of its already-established Broadband Committee.
Any person or entity that is interested in learning more about this broadband planning effort is encouraged to contact City of Belfast Economic Development Director Thomas Kittredge via email or via phone at 207-338-3370, extension 116. Information related to this broadband planning process will also be posted at this location.