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Merit Network and TC3 Partner to Complete Portion of Last Mile Fiber Network in Adrian

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Merit Network, Inc., Michigan’s statewide Research and Education network, announced today that it has partnered with TC3, a broadband Internet and telecommunications provider serving much of Southeastern Michigan, to complete a portion of “last mile” fiber-optic construction extending from the downtown Adrian area.

The fiber build extends from Siena Heights University and Jackson Community College in the north to form a ring in the west around Adrian College and its surrounding neighborhoods.

Merit Network’s portion of the fiber build connects Adrian College, Adrian Public Library, Jackson Community College and Siena Heights University to Merit’s leading edge backbone, providing these institutions access to statewide collaboration that they will leverage to cut costs and provide more to their patrons and constituents.

“Merit is excited to partner with TC3Net on the construction of “last mile” facilities in Adrian. Working with TC3 achieves a comprehensive approach for Adrian, benefitting all sectors of society and keeping with the spirit of the BTOP grant to improve broadband resources for entire communities,” said Elwood Downing, vice president of member relations, communications, services and product development, Merit Network.

For TC3 the fiber is the foundation for a fiber to the premise (FTTX) project that will serve various types of clients with phone and Internet services exceeding in performance and quality what is currently available in the area. The new fiber optic lines will make possible the delivery of multiple telephone lines and broadband speeds of up to 100 Mbps over single circuits. The build’s first users will be brought onto the network over the next few months.

Joseph Mattausch, President of TC3, is pleased with the collaborative project. “I believe this is a fine example of how both public and private interests can come together and produce something that benefits the community at large.”

The fiber network announced today builds on the foundation created by the REACH-3MC project. REACH-3MC is funded in part by grants from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s (NTIA) Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), commonly referenced as the Stimulus Package.

Led by Merit, REACH-3MC constructs advanced fiber-optic network through rural and underserved communities in Michigan. In the process, Merit connects community anchor institutions (schools, libraries, health care, government, public safety) by way of “laterals,” or spurs, from the mainline.

TC3, a REACH-3MC sub-recipient, has partnered with Merit on the construction of “laterals” to take the next step of expanding the REACH-3MC backbone to neighborhoods, businesses, educational institutions, and municipalities in Adrian. The full implementation of the FTTX “last mile” network in Adrian will likely take years, but many residents and businesses will benefit within months.

About Merit Network

Merit Network Inc., is a nonprofit corporation owned and governed by Michigan’s public universities. Merit owns and operates America’s longest-running regional research and education network. In 1966, Michigan’s public universities created Merit as a shared resource to help meet their common need for networking assistance. Since its formation, Merit Network has remained at the forefront of research and education networking expertise and services. Merit provides high-performance networking and IT solutions to Michigan’s public universities, colleges, K-12 organizations, libraries, state government, healthcare, and other non-profit organizations.

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About TC3

TC3 is a telecommunications provider specializing in providing residents and businesses with economical, high quality Internet, telephone, and networking products. TC3, headquarter in Adrian, MI, is one of the largest providers of these services in Lenawee County and the surrounding communities with over 6000 active customers including major municipalities, enterprises, and businesses in Lenawee County.


The REACH Michigan Middle Mile Collaborative (REACH-3MC) will build 2,287 miles of open-access, advanced fiber-optic network through rural and underserved communities in Michigan’s Lower and Upper Peninsulas. The network will also provide backhaul to key connection points in Wisconsin and Minnesota. Led by Merit Network, Michigan’s research and education network, REACH-3MC includes sub-recipients from the private sector to make broadband readily available to households and businesses that lack adequate service options in the 52 counties that make up the project service area. REACH-3MC is funded by a two grants (Round I and Round II) from the Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), commonly referenced as the Stimulus Package.