New fiberoptic firm has fifth of Edwardsville connected

EDWARDSVILLE, IL. - Edwardsville residents seeking an alternative to AT&T, Spectrum or other cable television and Internet providers may want to consider i3 Broadband.

A leading Midwest fiber-to-the-home provider of 100% fiber-optic, high speed broadband service, is expanding its network to residents and businesses of select communities in the Metro East.

“We are thrilled to welcome i3 Broadband as a second option for high-speed fiber to your door for faster internet service,” Edwardsville Mayor Art Risavy said earlier this year. “This will ensure our visitors and the entire community have Internet options; especially those who are now working from home.



On Friday, CEO Paul Cronin said 20% of Edwardsville is either under construction or awaiting activation.

“Starting in January, about 1,500 customers will be activated,” he said. Cronin added that crews will continue working and connecting more residents and businesses through 2023 though he noted that they can’t go faster than what they city allows via its permitting process.

At the top of the scale, i3 offers a 1 Gigabit per second symmetrical system for a three-month promotional price of $50 a month then it would increase to $89.98 a month, along with free wireless fidelity (wi-fi). Stepping down, the next rung is a 500 Megabit per second symmetrical system for a three-month promotional price of $45 a month then $64.99 per month. Next is a 250 Megabit per second symmetrical system for a three-month promotional price of $40 for three months then $54.99 per month.

He said there is also 100 Megabit service available for $5 per month who qualify for the Affordable Connectivity Program in a variety of ways, such as via the federal free-or-reduced school lunch program.

I3 officials claim broadband usage rates between 2017 and 2022 jumped more than 23%, aided by the pandemic lockdown, which forced people to work from home. Next, Cronin said multi-gig speeds are on the horizon with symmetrical speeds up to 2 Gigabits per second; speeds ideal for users who:

•    Work from home
•    Are home-schooled
•    Are video-game users
•    Are heavy video users.

Cronin said one difference between i3 and some of its competitors is they are using older technology, which can limit speed and other features offered to customers.

“We’re a local company, with a fuller experience, versus some of the national companies, where you may not where calls go or who will answer them,” Cronin said.

He said while did not have the exact job figures at hand that accompany this move into the Metro East, they seek market sales and customer service professionals as well as service technicians to support the area's expansion. Those interested in applying should email to submit a resume. Those interested in switching providers can visit or email  

Based in Peoria, i3 Broadband will invest $300 million to bring the fastest and most reliable fiber optic network on the market to communities in West St. Louis County and Metro East. This increased investment and expansion into the region will bring quality jobs and make the region more attractive to the business community by introducing greater competition.

“In the communities where i3 Broadband operates, we have become a true advocate for economic development and have forged strong partnerships with community and business leaders,” said Cronin. “Having access to today’s best technology is a key component of advancing quality of life and spurring investment in communities. We will be bringing the fiber backbone that serves as a vital building block for the future, as well as new, high-quality broadband technology jobs with on-the-job training.”

Construction in Edwardsville is expected to take just over two years to complete. 

Written By: Charles Bolinger