VIKOR Teleconstruction accompanied public officials Wednesday to a 5G small cell site in downtown Sioux Falls, SD. The visit was to commemorate the construction of the 12 small cell sites in the downtown area. The first sites went operational in 2019, according to VIKOR, which handled the build. SDN Communications supplied the fiber.
FCC Commissioner Brendan Carr, Sioux Falls Mayor Paul TenHaken, staff from Senator John Thune’s (R-SD) office and NATE were accompanied by members of the VIKOR team and SDN executives. The Sioux Falls City Council unanimously approved a contract with Verizon Wireless for the sites in January 2019, Inside Towers reported. At the time, TenHaken described his pro-growth stance to next-generation buildouts.
“Sioux Falls has created a regulatory environment ahead of its peers in welcoming technology as opposed to restricting it,” VIKOR CEO Craig Snyder told Inside Towers this week. “That philosophy has fostered growth and expansion in business and benefited our citizens through better connectivity. We’re grateful to Mayor TenHaken for having the vision to encourage 5G technology on the city light poles and other places throughout the community.”
Snyder credited several regulators for their work behind the scenes, including Thune, TenHaken, and former FCC Chair Ajit Pai. Thanks to their work, he explained, “Sioux Falls became a test bed for the roll out of Verizon’s Ultra Wideband 5G technology over three years ago. Today, we celebrated this success brought to the businesses and citizens of Sioux Falls.” He gave kudos to Carr, adding that “no one has been a better ambassador for expanding wireless technology and the workforce that builds it.”
Carr said that with TenHaken’s leadership, Sioux Falls was on the leading edge of 5G and high-speed internet builds with service going live in 2019. “His regulatory approach served as a model for cities across the country,” he tweeted.
By Leslie Stimson, Inside Towers Washington Bureau Chief