Lewis County-ToledoTel Awarded Full Request of $23.5 Million to Bring Broadband to Winlock Area

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Lewis County and ToledoTel received the largest chunk of funding Thursday when the Washington State Broadband Office published its list of awardees for the first round of Infrastructure Acceleration Grants.

About $23.5 million will be awarded to Lewis County and ToledoTel in a public-private partnership that will aim to bring high-speed, fiber-optic internet to more than 1,800 Winlock residents by the end of 2026.

The Washington State Broadband Office has awarded more than $145 million in first-grant funding to 13 projects statewide. The Lewis County Public Utility District was not among the awardees listed Thursday; the PUD hopes to find funding to bring broadband out to Randle-Packwood.

With more than 1,800 broadband subscribers currently, the Winlock project is expected to double ToledoTel’s servicing network and customer base over the next five years. The project would cover 250 miles of fiber construction within the Winlock area.

ToledoTel hopes to break ground on the project sometime later this year and have about 820 new customers connected by the end of 2022.

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Look for more information in Tuesday’s edition of The Chronicle.