CAS Cable in process of hard-wired service

MARIETTA — Marietta television viewers and Internet users will have a new option for cable service, but for now it’s off well into the future.

CAS Cable of Parkersburg is in the process of building out a new hard-wired service for the city.

Shannon Shaulis, sales and marketing director for the cable firm, said CAS is in the process of setting up a new cable network in Marietta, but she said it’s too soon to say when the service will be available to Marietta customers.

CAS is now stringing a large cable conduit along the Williamstown Bridge that will serve as a trunk line for the new network, she said.

“We had to get permits to go across the Williamstown Bridge, and it took quite some time — it’s a lot of conduit — but we have our own local employees building it from the ground up,” she said.

CAS already has a network in Belpre, she said.

“The expansion into Belpre stirred things up and got people talking,” she said. “We’ve gotten so many calls from people in Marietta who want more options.”

CAS has been offering service in Wood and Jackson counties for 40 years, she said.

“I think next within the next year we’ll be able to say more accurately when our Marietta service might be available,” she said. “It usually takes a couple of years to do a franchise build-out of this size.”

Suddenlink for now offers the only hard-wired cable community service for Marietta.

The company came under criticism three years ago when it dropped several Viacom channels after a period of heated negotiations with the program provider failed.

Suddenlink was acquired in late 2015 by Altice N.V., a global telecom based in the Netherlands, and an agreement with Viacom was struck in May 2017 allowing it to restore several Viacom networks to its lineup. The channels returned in September for Marietta subscribers.

They are available starting with the SL 200 tier.

The Viacom channels include Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, MTV, BET, Nick Jr., VH1, Spike, TV Land and CMT. Suddenlink said the agreement includes “additional rights for the distribution of multi-platform, digital and next-generation Viacom content including select virtual reality and 4K For Altice USA’s current and future customer offerings.”