Treehouse Broadband dialing up project

A $450,000 wireless broadband project in the Town of Morse is moving forward.
Isaac Olson of Treehouse Broadband updated the Morse board on Tuesday night. Olson said over the last four weeks he’s talked to over 100 people in the area the project will cover.
He’s also met with island owners on Burntside Lake.
One lease is signed and five or six others have been given to the owners for the repeaters on the island.
He said an antenna has been installed on the Winton water tower with testing ongoing.
The two taller towers are planned for Wolf Lake and Little Long Lake with a spot planned that is within sight of the Ely water tower will be built using a 30-foot tower instead of 100 footer.
He is putting together updated costs on those two locations which would be able to redistribute the township funding to the two towers and/or to help fund expansion elsewhere.
Olson said with the cost savings from the smaller towers there may be opportunities to provide coverage to additional people.
For the following month there is engineering work happening on the smaller towers.
By the end of July Treehouse will be able to build out the first repeater sites and begin installing customers.
There are two local contractors, Jason Hedloff who contracts for DISH and Mauro Caruso from Custom Theaters. Another contractor is also available if needed.
Olson said there are now 50 customers which do not include the resorts which have multiple cabins so that number could be doubled.
Supervisor Terry Soderberg said public funds need to be protected so the township will need to own the towers.
Olson said Burntside Lodge has every cabin connected except for two and people have been able to stay longer and work while on vacation.
Olson said an antenna has been installed 35 feet up a tree on the North Arm Road that has line of sight to the water tower.
The MnDOT tower at Hidden Valley has space available at 280 feet which would include coverage down Hwy. 1 and White Iron Lake. He said there is a lot to do before that can be looked at.
He said to get on the Verizon tower on Hwy. 1 is $1,000 a month where the DOT tower is $50 a month.