Communications utility Loveland Pulse has installed its 100% fiber-optic network with gigabit internet speeds to Big Thompson Elementary School to improve its previously poor network connectivity.
This installation solves a significant problem for Big Thompson Elementary School (BTES) and Thompson School District (TSD) with students returning to schools for in-person learning. Pulse capitalized on a Platte River Power Authority (PRPA) project and the power division’s recent electric line upgrades in order to install its network to the school.
“When our team realized that we could work together with other utilities to save money installing our fiber, we knew we had to jump at the opportunity,” said Brieanna Reed-Harmel, Pulse manager. “We will continue to take advantage of other ways to save money and get more people connected through these kinds of collaborations,” Brieanna said.
There was a 4G connection turned on over the summer with the school using only radio point-to-point at a bandwidth lower than 4G prior to that. The bandwidth at BTES was so low that the school was limited in the types of learning software accessible according to TSD Chief Technology Officer Matt Kuhn.
“Since most of our software is cloud-based, this was a major problem,” said Matt. “The district no longer has to maintain two different kinds of internet connections to our schools, easing processes and saving us money,” Matt said.
Teachers have built blended learning models with the goal of incorporating virtual field trips and tours, meetings with students at other schools and groups within the community, and much more. Furthermore, BTES needed to stagger when classes went online so that students could work online without interruptions.
Pulse had begun constructing its network back in November of last year and expects it to take three to four years from that date to complete phase 1 of the project within Loveland city limits. Phase two will include the remainder of the City’s electric service area including Big Thompson Canyon residents.
“Our local Pulse team can’t wait to see how our network improves the lives of the teachers and students in our schools, starting with BTES,” said Brieanna. “We know there is a critical need for reliable, high-speed internet service across the area and want to thank everyone in the community for their patience as we are doing everything we can to install our network safely and efficiently to get our residents and businesses the connections they deserve,” Brieanna said.
Pulse will be available to all residents and businesses within the city of Loveland three to four years after construction began in November 2019. Sign up to receive service and construction updates at LovelandPulse.com