UFD lays fiber lines in York City

Jason Addy

United Fiber & Data moved one step closer to finishing its multi-state, high-speed internet highway after laying fiber-optic lines in downtown York City on Tuesday.

UFD expects to finish its 400-mile fiber backbone connecting New York City to Ashburn, Virginia, through rural areas within “a few months,” said Bill Hynes, UFD founder and CEO.

Employees of Hylan Datacom & Electrical pull York-based United Fiber and Data's fiber-optic line into the tunnel to run it into New Jersey.

After routing miles and miles of fiber-optic lines under the Hudson River and through New Jersey for the past year, the company completed the Pennsylvania portion of its project this week.

Hynes said UFD is now “turning the corner” on the project and will soon begin laying fiber-optic lines in Maryland and Virginia.

“It;s an exciting time for UFD," Hynes said. "Many people doubted that this day would happen. Through persistence and tenacity, we’ve accomplished this one small goal.”

New York City and New Jersey were “bears to get through,” but the Maryland and Virginia portions of the project will not be nearly as difficult, he said.

York-based UFD connects into New Jersey

UFD “sped through” the Pennsylvania segment, with rural areas proving to be much less of a logistical problem than what the company faced in the first phase of the project in New York City.

The fiber backbone is not meant for direct purchase by residential customers, so a company such as Comcast or AT&T would need to connect to UFD’s line to provide the service to its customers, company President and Chief Operating Officer Chris Lodge has said.

“The presence of UFD’s fiber network in York will prove valuable to our customers across south-central Pennsylvania and beyond,” Lodge said in the release. “We are grateful for the continued support and encouragement from many individuals we’ve had the privilege of working with over the last several years.”

The company's high-speed network project is funded by private investors, including members of the York-based band Live.

Lawsuit: UFD is facing a multi-million dollar lawsuit from Olympus Securities, the company's former investment bank, alleging UFD did not pay contractually obligated fees and improperly terminated the contract early.

Investment firm sues UFD for $2.1 million

Olympus Securities is seeking $2.1 million in damages, alleging UFD's improper termination of the contract cut the company out of its commissions on several large investments.

Since Olympus Securities filed the suit in March 2016, lawyers for UFD and Olympus have filed dozens of motions in the case, with UFD asking for a full dismissal of the lawsuit.

In October 2016, a federal district judge denied UFD's motion to dismiss the complaint outright, according to online court records. Since then, the two companies' lawyers have filed numerous counterclaims and motions for deadline extensions.