Whip City Fiber Expanding in Westfield, Mass.

  • Whip City Fiber
WESTFIELD, MA — The Westfield Gas and Electric (WG+E) Municipal Light Board has approved the expansion of the Whip City Fiber network. Now gigabit-speed Internet service delivered over a fiber optic network will be available to even more residents and businesses in Westfield. In last summer’s pilot program, WG+E launched Whip City Fiber to bring high-speed fiber optic Internet to a pilot area of approximately 240 homes and businesses.

“Response to Whip City Fiber in the pilot area has been tremendous,” noted WG+E General Manager, Dan Howard. “Customers who have signed up for this service appreciate how easy it is to stream movies and TV shows, as well as upload and download large files. The entire family can be using the Internet at the same time on different devices, and the experience will be seamless with no buffering or interruptions.”

Thomas Flaherty, chair of the Municipal Light Board stated, “WG+E is committed to bringing the same high level of service, reliability, and competitive pricing to our new high-speed Internet customers that our electric and natural gas customers are accustomed to receiving. It’s another value-added service that our locally owned and operated utility can provide to the community.”

Neighborhood Competition
Rather than selecting the next neighborhood to receive service, WG+E/WCF is encouraging a little friendly competition. Customers who are interested in a fiber Internet connection to their home or business are asked to go to the Whip City Fiber website. After entering their address, visitors are shown their “fiberhood” and can indicate their interest by submitting their email address via an online form. Customers can encourage their neighbors to sign up too and watch their fiberhood move up the list towards installation. WG+E/WCF will decide where to build based, in part, on areas with the strongest interest.

Whip City Fiber represents the next generation of high-speed connectivity for homes and businesses. The benefits of fiber optic Internet include exceptionally high upload and download speeds, an increase in home values (upwards of $4,000 according to studies conducted by Corning and the FTTH Council), the reliability and longevity of the infrastructure, and increased economic attractiveness for new companies considering relocation.

Near Instant Downloads
The Whip City Fiber network is made up of hair-thin pieces of glass called optical fiber. One small strand of fiber can carry 1,000 times as much information as the traditional copper wire used in cable television and telephone networks. When asked about the advantages of a fiber optic network, Operations Manager Aaron Bean said, “Compared to legacy systems, fiber provides a much faster and enjoyable Internet experience. Content such as web pages, movies, songs, and emails speed through fiber at light speed which means near instant downloads. It makes the old days of waiting for movies and songs to buffer and begin playing a distant memory which means more time actually watching rather than waiting.”

WG+E is confident that the fiber network will have a positive impact on Westfield. Howard said, “The increased bandwidth of Whip City Fiber will give businesses a step up in the global economy, as has been seen in the other communities across the nation. Whip City Fiber will make it easier for residents to work from home and provide unmatched, reliable streaming access to online entertainment, education, and e-commerce.”

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