BARC Connects VATI Grant Update
Last week the Central Shenandoah Planning District Commission (CSPDC) distributed a press release regarding grant funding for the “BARC Connects Rockbridge County” project made possible from a $2.2M grant from the Virginia Telecommunications Initiative (VATI). We know many of you are anxious for construction to begin and to have access to broadband services and we are just as anxious to get it to you.
The project areas included in the grant are our BARC Electric service areas including Cornwall East-South River-Vesuvius electric circuit, a portion of the Big Hill circuit, the Effinger-Glasgow circuit, and the South Buffalo circuit. This project will provide approximately 111 miles of gigabit last mile fiber infrastructure bringing broadband access to almost 800 BARC members. To better illustrate the grant funded locations, we have included maps by electric circuit.
We have already begun right-of-way clearing as well as the beginning phases of engineering, and material acquisition for the project. Additionally, we have been working on other construction preparations including any necessary pole replacements. The next piece of the process is to conduct data collection of the build areas. This task is a requirement for any broadband construction we undertake and BARC contractors from Vantage Point Solutions (VPS) will be on or near your property conducting mapping activities. This will allow us to determine the eligible service addresses for the project. Part of the process is to take a photo of existing electric meters on properties to ensure we have the correct GIS coordinates in mapping out the project area. If you have any questions or concerns about this process, please contact us at 800-846-2272.
As of September 28, 2020, our current project timeline is as follows:
Closer to the start of construction, BARC will send direct mail information to eligible consumers in the grant funded project areas on service offerings and how to sign-up for service. We will include updates in our ‘Fiber Construction Updates’ that are made available on our website. You can find information on our progress by visiting http://www.barcconnects.net/news or follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/BARCElectricCooperative.
We appreciate your patience as we have worked through this grant process and look forward to bringing you world-class broadband service in 2021!