ePlanning DOI-BLM-NV-C020-2011-0509-EA (Digital 395 Middle Mile Project)  
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05/23/2012 14:42:49 MDT

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Sierra Front Field Office (SFFO) has participated in the preparation of the Digital 395 Middle Mile Project Environmental Assessment (EA).  The lead agency for this project is the National Telecommunication and Information Administration, a part of the Department of Commerce.

The Final EA analyzed the potential direct, indirect and cumulative effects to the human environment associated the project.  The California Broadband Cooperative Inc. has proposed the Digital 395 Middle Mile Project. The network would be located between Barstow, California and Reno, Nevada providing broadband services to the Eastern Sierra.  The route primarily follows U.S. Highway 395.  The service area includes 36 communities, seven Indian Reservations and two military installations.  The new infrastructure would provide broadband access to: unserved and underserved communities; schools, libraries, community colleges; public safety agencies and healthcare providers.  The project is a part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and would create jobs and stimulate the economy.

The project would include the following features:

  -  construct a new approximately 479 mile backbone fiber route;
  -  construct approximately 62 miles of new distribution lines;
  -  place approximately 52 miles of fiber in existing utility conduits; and
  -  construct 16 nodes or prefabricated buildings to support wireless systems.

The portion of the project area that crosses SFFO-managed lands includes approximately two miles along U.S. Highway 395 in Douglas County, Nevada and three miles of SFFO-managed lands in Carson City and Washoe County, Nevada.

The public comment period ended on September 27, 2011.

On May 4, 2012 the NTIA issued its Final EA and Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) for the project (see Documents).

On May 23, 2012 the SFFO issued a FONSI and Decision Record for the project (see Documents).