The governor’s plan to spend $51 million to build 100 new cell towers across the state holds the promise of improved cellphone reception for many. The Vermont Public Service Department is working to pinpoint which areas of the state would benefit most from these 100 new cell towers. “We’re shooting for 100 towers but we don’t think 100 towers will provide universal ubiquitous service,” said Clay Purvis, the director of telecommunications and connectivity for the Vermont Department of Public Service. Purvis says the Department of Public Service estimates:
- 40% of Vermonters are not receiving adequate cell coverage to their home
- 10% of Vermont roadways lack coverage from any carrier
- 62% of Vermont roadways have poor reception
Currently, there are 412 cell towers in Vermont. In 2018, the state conducted signal strength tests by driving along all state and federal highways. There are plans for more tests this winter and spring to identify priority areas and tower sites.