Published Tuesday, April 20, 2021
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff
The Electricity Institute, ICE, began the installation of telecommunications service antenna towers in five indigenous territories, as part of the Connected Communities program.
The cost of the program is covered by the National Telecommunications Fund, Fonatel, which has an annual budget of more than $11 million for its program in indigenous territories, according to information published by the Superintendency of Telecommunications.
The antenna towers are being installed by the institute in the territories of Talamanca, Cabécar, Tayní, Keköldi and Talamanca Bribrí, in the Caribbean Coast.
Another antenna will be installed in the indigenous territories of Rey Curré, in the southern zone of the country.
Two more antennae towers are being installed on the Caribbean Coast. Another four more towers are being built in the southern zone of the country.
These new towers are added to those already installed in the areas for a total of 60 antennas that will allow internet and telephone access to 138 communities.
"We are working simultaneously in two projects, to move forward as established and meet the expectations of a plan as important as this is," Herbert Barrot, project director said. "Currently we are placing poles and we will install the fiber that allows the connectivity of the towers."
In these first five territories, 365 poles were installed to support 92,800 meters of fiber optics.
In addition to the indigenous territories, the institute also installed more telecommunication towers in the Chirripó mountain on the Caribbean Coast and in the Salitre community in the southern zone of the country.
According to the institute, with the telecommunication towers installed and working, about 36,000 people will have access to internet and phone services.
Last month, the institute provided, for the first time, electricity services to 15 families living in the Zapatón indigenous territory located in Puriscal Canton, San José Province. This is an area of 3,514 hectares, and one of the two Costa Rican indigenous territories where the Huetar ethnic group lives. The other community is Quitirrisí in San José Province.
The 500-meter long electrical network provides service to 15 families and was carried out by the institute. The installation cost approximately $18,800 and was financed with the budget of the Rural Development Institute.
According to the institute, another upgrade in the zone this year is a 500-meter-long asphalt road in the indigenous territory budgeted at approximately $127,000.
There is also the construction of another electrical service network of 1,363 meters long in the indigenous community of Gamalotillo in Turrubares Canton, San José Province.
Gamalotillo has an area of 343 hectares, which includes 69 agricultural production areas, 2 areas that are part of wild reserves and 39 lots where the community houses are located. This new electrical network is budgeted at approximately $14,200 and covered with the budget of the Rural Development Institute.
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