Guam launches $11.4m project to expand broadband in southern villages

Photo: David Castro/ Guam Daily Post

The Office of the Governor today announced the launch of a new fibre and 5G installation to expand broadband coverage in Southern Guam. 

The $11.4 million project awarded to IT&E was authorised by the U.S Department of Commerce, National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) under the Broadband Infrastructure Programme to expand network infrastructure and broadband services to the people of Guam.  

“High-speed Internet service is not a luxury – it’s a necessity,” said Geoff Jordan, Director of the Broadband Infrastructure Programme, NTIA. “This project will help bridge the digital divide and connect hundreds of families in Guam to affordable, reliable Internet service.” 

IT&E teams are currently micro trenching in the Piti area for buried fiber optic cable and 5G installation for the Guam Southern Buried Fibre Optic Cable and 5G Project.  

Officials said the new broadband system will increase the current availability of broadband services to residences, businesses and community anchor institutions in Southern Guam.   

This increased availability includes the minimum broadband speeds of 25 Mbps for downloads with 3 Mbps for uploads to 4,900 locations and at least 100 Mbps for downloads with 20 Mbps uploads to more than 1,500 locations.  

“Closing the digital gap with increased access and higher internet speeds will strengthen business and job opportunities and improve service delivery programmes in health and education that our residents in the south can benefit from,” said Lt Gov Josh Tenorio.  

“The combined solutions will create a broadband system that can evolve for future advanced services and technologies, and the buried fibre network will provide greater network resiliency against typhoons and other natural disasters.” 

“Empowering communities with access to high-speed internet is not just connecting households; it’s about connecting dreams, opportunities, and limitless possibilities. This fiber and 5G project represents our commitment to bridging the digital divide, ensuring that every household on the island can access the gateway to knowledge, services, and a brighter future,” said David Gibson, CEO of IT&E.  

IT&E said it will deploy a mixed system that includes expanded fiber infrastructure and new radios and antennas on IT&E’s existing wireless towers. Two buried, interconnected yet physically diverse rings of fiber totaling 72.7 miles will be constructed with 26 wireless towers across the South that will be upgraded for 5G capabilities to quickly deliver internet to homes.  

Following the completion of the buried Middle Mile, IT&E plans to extend high-speed broadband services to all of the locations in the Southern Guam region through a mix of Fixed Wireless Access, Fibre-to-the-Home, and Fibre-to-the-Building.