By Tim Leeds
TTC (Triangle Telephone Cooperative) and HCE (Hill County Electric) began using their new building early this month.
The businesses announced in a press release that customers began using the building for bill payments and service requests on April 2, and commented on the building's bright and spacious atmosphere.
The older building is now being renovated. The new entrance and lobby will provide the connection between the two buildings.
General Manager John Magyar said local contractors provided high quality work, but still kept the project within budgetary constraints.
"Clausen & Sons, our general contractor and their subcontractors, have done excellent work and the quality shows. From the ground source heating to the electric and lighting systems, form the concrete and brick work to the built-in cabinetry, the finished product is superb," Magyar said in the release. "The new building is nearing completion and I am happy that we are still under budget."
The building was designed to include requests from the employees, solicited early in the design process. They included larger work cubicles, a lighter color scheme with more natural lighting and a more customer-friendly layout.
The new building is 16,000 square feet, which will be in addition to the original building's 13,500 square feet once its renovation is completed.
The release said the additional space was needed due to expansion into new markets. HCE, which was incorporated in 1945, provides electrical service to more than 2,000 members in northcentral Montana. TTC serves more than 10,500 subscriber lines in rural Montana, and its subsidiary, CMC (Central Montana Communications) provides service to more than 8,000 subscriber lines.
TTC's expansion, with the purchase of telephone exchanges from the old U.S. West and its and CMC's offering long distance service, dial up Internet access, high speed broadband Internet and wireless telephone service, made the additional space provided by the new building necessary.