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Wendell's Town-Owned Network, Wendell NET, is Coming! 

 

 Construction begins November 11, 2019 and the current timeline of operational service will be in phases beginning early 2020! Interested in bringing high speed internet service to your home? Residents need to sign up now to secure installation and activation in 2020. 

Deadline to sign up for Underground Installation: November 1st, 2019

Deadline to sign up for Aerial Installation: January 1st, 2020.  

Install type is the same as your current utility service path. Not sure what type of install you have? Email

Sign up by making your one-time $99 sign-up/activation fee payment online:

1. Head to this link: https://unipaygold.unibank.com/

2. Choose “Wendell, Town of” using the Search drop down box in the middle of the page.

You will then be directed to Wendell’s payment site. 

3. Choose the “Broadband” button on the left-hand side. Follow the prompts to finalize your payment.

Sign up by mailing in or dropping off your one-time $99 sign-up/activation fee payment:

 Please enclose the following information with your $99 payment: Name, Address of Service (not a PO Box), Phone number, Email address, and type of service requested Internet service; Internet and VoIP phone service; or Phone-only service.

Make the check out to Town of Wendell and mail to:
WiredWendell
P.O. Box 145
Wendell, MA 01379
(or drop off)​
If you would like a receipt for your payment, include a SASE or email address and state that request. 

Head here to read the most current update including information about your Wired West $49 Deposit Refund.

      

October 2019 Trenching to the Wendell NET Hut - Photos by Eyes Above Franklin County - Michael Wallitis

Wendell NET Broadband committee's mission is to facilitate the acquisition and installation of a high-speed Broadband town-owned network in Wendell. We work daily on this goal with an emphasis on high speed access to our schools, library, town hall, police and fire departments, small businesses, home-bound residents, disabled residents, and seniors. We continue to analyze costs and financial options to assure fiscal responsibility during construction and operation of the net. We work closely with Wendell's Selectboard, who is the current acting Board for "Wired Wendell", our Municipal Light Plant (MLP), making recommendations to the Board (MLB) as necessary and appropriate. We also work closely with EOHED, Westfield Gas & Electric, and Whip City Fiber, our NO (network operator) and ISP (internet service provider) to assure that Wendell’s best interests are being served during the design, make-ready, light-up, and operation phases of the network. 

 

 

Wendell NET Broadband September 2019 Update

When will broadband be available in Wendell?

Since our June update, we have learned that our service date has been pushed out further than January 2020. The delay in large part is due to Verizon’s extended make ready completion date of December 2019. In addition, there are 20 or so other towns utilizing the same project management firm and materials supplier. Due to these factors, and considering winter weather impediments, main construction will likely not begin until the second quarter of 2020. However, there are many other preliminary projects underway that we hope to complete before winter as we move forward diligently each week. We will continue to provide residents with the most up-to-date information as we progress. 

 

What do I need to do next? 

In order to commit to service and be entered into Whip City Fiber’s Customer Database, you’ll need to pay your $99 activation fee through Wendell’s online UniPay payment system. Head to this link: 

https://unipaygold.unibank.com/default.aspx 

Choose “Wendell, Town of” using the Search drop down box in the middle of the page. You will then be directed to Wendell’s payment site where you will choose the “Broadband” button on the left-hand side. Follow the prompts to finalize your payment. Note: an email account is required to receive service and to activate your account. 

 

I have an underground installation, what do I need to do?

If you have an underground installation planned or are unsure of whether you have underground or aerial installation at your home, please pay the above activation fee right away and email the broadband committee as we plan to get underground installations completed before the ground freezes. Even with the town’s $1200 subsidy applied, installing a new micro duct conduit underground from the pole to your home can be pricey, especially for homes with longer underground service lengths. We have found some solutions to help with your out of pocket costs. 

Many homes already have a spare conduit installed for other utilities which can be used for the fiber, significantly reducing the cost. If your home already has a phone line in conduit, it may be possible to pull the new fiber through with the phone line. This will involve a disruption in phone service for the time it takes to pull the wire through, but it will save the cost of digging a new trench and duct to the house. 

Homeowners also have the additional option of trenching and installing micro duct themselves, or hiring a local contractor who will may be cheaper than the contractors being used on the overall project. We have acquired a reel of micro duct available to anyone who would like to take this option. Get in touch to discuss any of these options so we can arrange to have someone come to look over your situation and advise about routing of the conduit, and Dig Safe® procedures.  

 

What work is happening now? 

Verizon will continue to proceed with make ready work on the poles until winter sets in. Some poles will be replaced and others will require the current wires to be moved to make room for the fiber. Also, the stretch between #66 and #132 Farley Road will be trenched to make room for underground conduit as there aren’t any utility poles in that area and the town offices will be trenched to make room for the hut’s electrical connections. Additionally, residents with underground connections will be lined up for trenching although the fiber will not be pulled through until 2020’s construction phase.

Who will provide the fiber service to my home?

Whip City Fiber, powered by Westfield Gas & Electric, will be our Network Operator (NO) and Internet Service Provider (ISP). Having intimately worked with WGE/WCF during the beginning stages of design, through the make-ready process, and now into the preliminary construction phase, we have the utmost confidence in our working partnership and look forward to building the network together.

 

What will be the monthly cost for service?

Internet service only: $99/month. 

Internet and VoIP phone service: $119/month. (existing telephone # will remain)

VoIP phone service only: $80/month.

  

How fast is 1 Gigabit fiber optic service?

I Gigabit fiber speed is translated into 1000 Megabits or 125MB/s (megabytes per second as we are used to). How fast is 1000Mbps or 125MB/s is in terms of usage? Below are examples of files with the average download duration:

MP3 file — 3MB, less than 1 second

TV episode — 350MB, 3 seconds

720p High Definition TV episode — 950MB, 8 seconds

Blu-Ray Movie — 15GB, 2 minutes

* For the best download speed, connect your PC directly to the Modem. Speeds will always vary depending on amount of usage, the processing speed of your device, the distance your device is from the router, and conditions on the wider network. It will, however, be faster than most of us have ever experienced in town!

 

What about my $49 Wired West deposit?

Since we are no longer part of Wired West, you may request a refund of your deposit by sending a written, signed request (including the address of service) to:  Wired West, WiredWest PO Box 60461 Florence, MA 01062. The request must come from the person who originally signed up; if a different name is used, it will be difficult to verify. Please include this information in your request: Name, Address you signed up for, Mailing address, Phone (optional), and Signature. You should receive your refund within 30 days of receiving your request.

 

What if I am already in a contract with an internet provider?

Early termination fees may apply for breaking a contract with your current internet provider.  Generally, the fee decreases every month over the term of your contract. These potential fees may be found on the company’s website or by contacting the committee: .

 

What if I have more questions? 

You are welcome to attend our bi-monthly meetings (generally every other Tuesday at the Town Offices), email the committee (), or head to our town webpage to read meeting minutes and updates: http://www.wendellmass.us/index.php/broadband-committee.html






Wendell Broadband June 2019 Update

When will broadband be available in Wendell?

Our current construction schedule shows the network up and running in 2020.

2018 Annual Report

The committee met in 23 regular sessions throughout the year for a cumulative 51.26 hours of meetings in conjunction with the select board, the acting Municipal Light Plant Board (MLPB), representing 385 human unit hours, committed to regularly scheduled meetings.

Everyone as individuals and groups worked tirelessly beyond the regular meetings to accomplish the necessary assignments to further the effort of bringing a modernized communication network to Wendell within task groups, phone conferencing, inter-town and state sponsored workshops, outreach networking, email responses, government/corporate liaising, not to mention the comprehensive note taking and archiving, and certain research by our volunteer clerk, Wanita Sears.

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