GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — One of the things that Greenville Mayor P.J. Connelly has stressed needs work in the city is having better internet access. Help may be on the way.
The City of Greenville on Thursday announced a partnership with MetroNet, a company based out of Evansville, Ind. The partnership will soon bring the company’s 100% fiber optic internet, TV and phone services to businesses and residents. It will also provide customers another option from what is currently available within the city.
The city said in a press release the agreement will allow MetroNet to invest more than $40 million in the community and bring fiber-to-the-home directly to Greenville residents.
“This announcement is a game-changer for the city of Greenville,” Connelly said. “As our city continues to grow, it is vital that we are able to provide fast, reliable, and affordable fiber optic options.
“At no time has that been more apparent than during the COVID-19 pandemic as virtual learning and remote work made the need for increased broadband access even more apparent. MetroNet’s high-speed fiber internet will increase technological capabilities for residents and businesses throughout the city and help Greenville thrive for years to come.”
The news comes as several cities in Eastern North Carolina, including Greenville, have experienced problems with internet provider Suddenlink. Several cities have drafted letters of concern to Suddenlink and to North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein about finding ways to improve Suddenlink’s service.
Some Suddenlink customers are happy to have more options. Chris Hodges posted on social media that his business in Greenville scheduled four installation appointments with Suddenlink in 2019, but installers were no-shows the first two times.
Lee Howell is a Suddenlink customer and said having options is a good thing.
“I think it would definitely help, if we can get more spread-out fiber optic is really great as well, higher speeds, more consistent speeds, that could help greatly, especially during the pandemic,” Howell said.
The fast-growing company is known for its reliable, high-speed internet speeds, friendly service, and fair pricing with no long-term contracts. Greenville city officials say MetroNet plans to begin construction in Greenville in the spring. Residents and businesses that are interested in MetroNet services may visit the construction.metronetinc.com to indicate their interest and to receive updates on construction throughout their community.
The company also plans to have a MetroNet storefront in Greenville to serve as the command center for customer service and sales. Customers will be able to visit the store to view service plans and discuss issues.
“We are excited to be expanding to Greenville, North Carolina, and the opportunities that this means for the community with a 100 percent fiber optic network,” MetroNet President John Cinelli said in the press release. “Residents and businesses will be able to experience a future-proofed network and we are proud to move forward together with this market, which is positioned well for growth. We can’t thank the Mayor and the Council enough for the invitation.”