Arkansas E-Link Construction – Completed

Current Status – (Extension) July-Sept 2013

– Completed all optical network equipment installation and tuning.

– Completed all backbone routers installation and turn-up.

– All fiber routes now carrying production traffic.

– Three community colleges having leased circuits are installed and carrying production traffic.

– Links to all community college networks are lit and backbone infrastructure is in place.

– Final cut-over of fiber-connected community college local area networks to ARE-ON network links was begun.

Year 3 Quarter 4 – Apr-June 2013

–       Placed 16 new network huts and completed electrical wiring.

–       Completed fiber lateral build (49.32 miles).

–       Completed 715.89 miles of fiber optic cable by IRU providers.

–       Connected Southern Arkansas University (SAU) at Magnolia to the network & installed equipment.

–       Installed optical equipment at 31 sites.

–       Installed two community colleges (having leased circuits) enabling them to carry production traffic.

–       Lit southern fiber path (Monticello to Hope) and northern fiber path (Fayetteville to Jonesboro).

–       Began installation of new 10G e-Link waves.

Year 3 Quarter 3 – Jan-Mar 2013

– Construction: Lateral fiber – 33.25 of approximately 33.29 miles of conduit is now placed and 46.71 of 47.28 miles of new fiber is installed.

– Pre-fab Telecom Huts: One (1) new fiber hut was placed completing 14 of 16 planned telecommunication huts.

– Installed equipment at newly connected Southern Arkansas University, Magnolia and seven (7) telehealth co-location hub sites.

– Hot staging of all equipment is completed in preparation for installation of optical and router equipment at remaining sites during Year 3, Quarter 4.

– Placed order for leased circuits for installation at three (3) community colleges.

Year 3 Quarter 2 – Oct-Dec 2012

–  IRUs: The four IRU fiber providers met 62 project milestones, completing 100% of the 716 total miles of fiber optic cable.

–  Construction: Lateral fiber – 32.30 of approximately 33.24 miles of conduit is now placed and 46.36 of 47.05 miles of new fiber is installed.

–  Pre-fab Telecom Huts: Two (2) new fiber huts were placed (completing 13 of 16 planned telecommunication huts).

Year 3 Quarter 1 – July-Sept 2012

– IRU providers continued to deliver on project milestones, completing at least 565 of 716 total miles (79%).

Year  2 Quarter 4 – Apr-June 2012

– IRUs: The four IRU providers met 43 of the total 62 milestones, with completion of 5 of the 17 overall fiber routes and approximately 484 of the total 716 miles of fiber.

– Construction: Lateral fiber – a total of 1.98 miles of new conduit was installed (completing 28.49 of approximately 28.87 miles and 9.95 miles of new fiber was installed (completing 46.95 of approximately 48.83 miles).

– Pre-fab Telecom Huts: Seven (7) new fiber huts were placed completing 11 of 16 planned telecommunication huts.

– Initial deployment of optical ROADMs is complete in three sites, with preliminary cold staging and inventory of the remaining optical equipment completed.

Year 2 Quarter 3 – Jan-Mar 2012

– IRUs: Providers have made steady, but somewhat slower than hoped, progress in delivering on milestones, however one IRU provider has delivered on both of its fiber routes

– Construction: Lateral fiber – still in progress with a total of 26.51 miles of conduit and 37.00 of 46.65 cable miles of fiber placed as of March 2012. Cable placement is approximately 100% complete pending final testing & acceptance in six cities. One route in Little Rock is completed and carrying traffic and work is in progress at Malvern, Harrison, and East Camden.

– Pre-fab Telecom Huts: Four (4) of 16 planned telecomm huts have been placed, with nine (9) addition huts planned over the next few months.

Year 2 Quarter 2 – Oct 2011-Dec 2011

– IRUs: Contracted final route (Jonesboro to Pocahontas) bringing the total fiber miles contracted to 690 miles. Fiber engineering is completed for 13 of the 17 routes. Construction is 99% complete for two routes, 66% complete for three routes and 33% complete for two routes.

– Construction: Lateral fiber – complete for Little Rock West project; complete for Pine Bluff and Morrilton projects except for final splicing; construction of conduit in progress in Little Rock (Center), Hope, Forrest City and Malvern.

-Huts: Hut installed in Morrilton; hut dirt work was completed for West Memphis, Forrest City, Harrison, Mountain Home, Melbourne, Newport, Malvern, Hope, Pine bluff and Fayetteville; hut manufacturing was initiated for Pine Bluff, Hope, Harrison, Malvern and Forrest City.

Year 2 Quarter 1 – July 2011-Sep 2011

– Started fiber construction on four routes: Pine Bluff, Little Rock West, Little Rock Center and Morrilton.

– Started Hut construction at four locations: Pine Bluff, Morrilton, Hope and Malvern.

Year 1 Quarter 4 – Apr-June 2011

– A number of tasks were completed associated with the first four fiber routes (Little Rock West, Little Rock Central, Pine Bluff and Morrilton) and the first four hut sites (Malvern, Hope, Morrilton and Pine Bluff). These activities included:

– Completed engineering on Outside Plant (OSP) package one and issued bid package for the first four fiber routes.

– Completed engineering on and issued bid package for the first four hut sites.

– Issued RFPs and selected vendors for inner-duct, fiber cable, generators, and huts.

– Purchased data cabinets for Pulaski Technical College and Little Rock Center fiber routes.

– Secured several easement acquisitions from land-owners and businesses for fiber cable installation.

Year 1 Quarter 3 – Jan-Mar 2011

– Began development of Network Design Phase II

– Engineering firm has conducted field reviews for biological and cultural issues relating to the environmental assessment (EA).

– The contracted company is preparing a revised EA draft that will include revised routes (the final estimate is 45-50 miles).

Year 1 Quarter 2 – Oct-Dec 2010

– Two qualified contractors were selected through Requests for Proposals (RFPs) to respectively design the leased and fiber networks. The network designs are now in their earliest stages of development.

– An engineering firm was selected via a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) to perform an Environmental Assessment (EA) of leased and fiber routes. The engineering firm began route and prefab site planning in parallel with the EA.

– Indefeasible Rights of Use (IRU) fiber routes were selected through an RFP process and are being employed to make the most efficient use of existing resources to expand the fiber network.

– A construction management firm was selected through an RFQ process to act as the general contractor for the construction of fiber and prefab site preparation.





The project described was made possible by Funding Opportunity number (Regulatory Identification Number) 0660–ZA28 and the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) number 11.557 from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, U.S. Department of Commerce National Telecommunications and Information Administration, BroadbandUSA.  The contents of this website are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of BroadbandUSA.

For a statement of network management policies, please visit our partners’ sites for the Arkansas Telehealth Oversight & Management (ATOM) Network, whose policy is currently in development, and the Arkansas Research & Education Optical Network (ARE-ON).