Metro Bytes: Windstream, WANRack, Crown Castle, Lightpath

Time for a mid-week look at recent news from the metro and government side of things:

Windstream picked up a federal deal this week that is definitely worth noting. They are one of three awardees that will be providing up to $450M worth of data and voice over the next 5 years to the agency’s 2,100 facilities nationwide, including the various VA medical centers. Even split three ways, that will take a significant amount of network, and the VA can certainly use the help these days.

Out in Colorado, the upstart E-Rate fiber builder WANRack has picked up another education customer. The Weld County RE-3J school district, which covers 3 towns in the plains northeast of Denver, has picked the company for a 10Gbps WAN that will replace legacy microwave access. There are a lot more districts out there yet with similar needs, of course.

Crown Castle has completed its acquisition of Sunesys, buying the network builder and operator from Quanta. With some three fiber acquisitions in the past 12 months under its belt, the tower specialist has quickly become one of the key consolidators of the sector. All the same, just how deep into the fiber business it wants to go remains an open question.

And in the New York metro area, Lightpath late last week highlighted its relationship with the New York State Public Service Commission. They won a 17th consecutive commendation for service, a record extending back before the bubble to the division’s founding. Lightpath has been fairly quiet lately on the news front, but has now passed the 7,000 on-net building mark, all in a single market region.