Cable company OKs extension to western county communities

February 20, 1996|By Shanon D. Murray | Shanon D. Murray,SUN STAFF

Mid-Atlantic Cable agreed last week to extend cable access to more communities in western Howard County by the end of June, ending a wait of more than 18 months for some communities, said James O'Connor, the county's cable administrator.

The company will build cable systems to serve residents of more than 20 communities, including Clearview Estates, Chapel Woods and Ashleigh Knolls in Clarksville; Amberwoods in Sykesville; Timberleigh Village, Foxmoor and Florence Farms in Woodbine; and Maryvale Court in Ellicott City.

Some communities will have cable as soon as April, said John Norcutt, president of Mid-Atlantic Cable.

"In western Howard County, there's growth all over the place," said Mr. Norcutt, adding that he couldn't estimate how many new homes will be serviced. "It's an ongoing process keeping up with the new subdivisions."

About 3,400 homes in west county now receive 62 channels from Mid-Atlantic cable. Comcast Corp. delivers service to the rest of the county.

Under the county's franchise agreement with Mid-Atlantic, the company must install cable systems in areas with at least 20 houses per mile of cable line.

The agreement does not stipulate a time limit for installing the cable lines for new communities that qualify, Mr. O'Connor said. Instead, the cable company agreed to begin construction once a year to accommodate additional communities.

"The whole procedure has been dragging on for quite some time," he said. "All the while, residents are waiting for cable."

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