Lumos Networks launches Project Ark for fiber to the cell site

U.S. Mid-Atlantic region fiber-optic network services provider Lumos Networks Corp. (NASDAQ:LMOS) says it will significantly upgrade its fiber to the cell site (FTTC) capabilities through “Project Ark.” The effort will see the company build a new MEF-certified Carrier Ethernet MPLS/IP fiber overlay network by the end of this year.

U.S. Mid-Atlantic region fiber-optic network services provider Lumos Networks Corp. (NASDAQ:LMOS) says it will significantly upgrade its fiber to the cell site (FTTC) capabilities through “Project Ark.” The effort will see the company build a new MEF-certified Carrier Ethernet MPLS/IP fiber overlay network by the end of this year.

The use of MPLS will support bandwidth scalability without a major network design overhaul or the installation of significant new equipment, Lumos Networks says.

“Over the last two years, Lumos Networks added 460 FTTC sites and we expect to add at least 200 more in 2014, equating to over 800 on-the-air sites by the end of 2014,” said Tim Biltz, president and CEO of Lumos Networks. “In order for us to continue to provide leading quality of service and to have the necessary bandwidth to reach our long-term goal of 1500 FTTC sites, we architected a separate, robust parallel Carrier Ethernet MPLS/IP fiber network intended exclusively for FTTC traffic. We have named this network ‘Project Ark’ and I consider this to be a major step forward in our goal to transform our network into the most dense and robust Carrier Ethernet network in the Mid-Atlantic region. Fiber bandwidth traffic from select large enterprise accounts may also be routed onto this new network.”

The Project Ark network will have a total design capacity of 1 Tbps to support an average of 1.5 tenants per site and 400 Mbps of throughput at each site. The new infrastructure will connect four key markets in the Lumos Networks footprint: Pittsburgh, PA; Charleston, WV; Roanoke, VA; and Ashburn, VA. Lumos Networks says the loop around these four cities is about 850 miles.

“Our FTTC carrier customers have endorsed our plans for Project Ark and we are collaborating with them on expected timing for the routing of their FTTC traffic,” said Craig Drinkhall, Lumos Networks CTO. “Routing all of our FTTC traffic on Project Ark will free up substantial space on our current network to satisfy the quality of service and growing bandwidth requirements for our current transport, enterprise, and IP services customers.”

Lumos Network recently revealed that its long-haul and metro fiber networks now cover a combined 7414 miles. The company says it also will expand the number of data centers connected to the network from 12 to 18 this year.

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