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Update: City looking into broadband expansion project following homeowner complaints

Published: Aug. 5, 2021 at 10:58 PM CDT
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) -

Update Friday, August 6th:

The City of Sioux Falls said on Friday that it’s looking into the work done by Vast Broadband, following complaints by homeowners.

“We are in close communication with Vast Broadband to better align the expectations of both the city and our residents with the work they are performing,” said Mayor Paul TenHaken. “In the meantime, we have paused issuing additional permits. Our City team is actively working with Vast to develop more transparent and comprehensive communications that outline the work that is taking place and where residents can call with questions or concerns.”

Earlier Story:

Vast Broadband began their three-year expansion plan recently, with a goal of bringing fiber-optic to the majority of Sioux Falls. But some residents are unhappy with how the project is being handled.

“I’m just really not ok with the way they went about it, just kind of seems like we’ve been blindsided,” said Carrie Rehnke, a Sioux Falls resident.

A major concern residents have with the project was what they consider a lack of communication.

“I asked the city if there was a notification that was sent out. They said there should have been one, but when I checked with all the neighbors we couldn’t find anybody that received one. I’ve got multiple calls into Vast and I haven’t seen or heard anything,” said Will Bushee, a Sioux Falls resident.

There is also concern about what some believe is a double standard.

“We’re not allowed to have our garbages out front because of the nuisance and how it appears in the city. Now there are giant green towers at every house,” Rehnke said.

The city of Sioux Falls wants residents to know their concerns are being heard.

“I just would ask for peoples patience and if you have any issues reach out to Vast and contact them directly,”

Dakota News Now reached out to Vast Broadband, the company issued the following statement regarding the project:

“Vast Broadband is committed to expanding Gig Internet to additional communities in South Dakota and our goal is to provide this great community with super-fast Fiber Internet service, and to do so with as minimal disruption as possible. We completely understand the questions and concerns that can come along with construction in yards of residents. This upgraded Internet technology requires special hardware including the recently installed pedestals in some yards. As we continue working with our communities to bring our Fiber Internet to more Sioux Falls residents, construction questions can be addressed to https://www.vastbroadband.com/fiberforward.”

- Brad Krebs said, a Senior Associate with Vast Broadband.

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