Arvig Awarded Line Extension Grants to Bring Fiber to 118 Unserved Locations
The Minnesota Office of Broadband Development (OBD) has awarded Arvig grant funding to extend existing fiber infrastructure to more than 118 unserved locations in several lakes-area counties.
Arvig was awarded grants totaling $842,562 from OBD’s Line Extension Connection program after submitting successful lowest-cost bids to provide fiber to the locations. Arvig will invest another $217,419 to cover additional project costs.
The Line Extension Connection program, administered by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) was created to bridge the gap in connecting homes and businesses just out of reach of existing last-mile infrastructure.
Created in 2022 with a budget of $15 million, the program invites residents and business owners to submit applications if they lack a wired connection with access to internet speeds of at least 25 Mbps download and 3 Mbps upload, which is considered unserved. Internet service providers then bid on the applications and are awarded grant funding based on the number of successful bids.
The program requires locations to be served with internet speeds of at least 100Mbps download and 100Mbps upload. Arvig expects to exceed that requirement, with plans to provide most locations access to speeds of up to 1 Gig download and 100Mb upload.
“Arvig is pleased to step in and fill this crucial need for high-speed connectivity in unserved areas of our state,” said Brett Christiansen, Director of Outside Plant Operations. “This new program has proven to be a successful tool for hearing from the homeowners and businesses in our area who—until now—have not had access to the faster internet speeds they need to stay connected to the world.”
Construction is currently underway, and will continue as weather conditions allow. Work is expected to be complete at all locations on or before Dec. 31, 2024.
More information about how to apply for the program is available at https://mn.gov/deed/programs-services/broadband/extension.
For assistance completing the application or to request a paper form, call 651-259-7610 or email DEED.email@example.com.
To date, the program has received more than 3,000 applications across the state of Minnesota.
Headquartered in Perham, Minnesota, Arvig is a local, employee-owned broadband and full-service telecommunications provider. Committed to delivering cutting-edge technology to customers throughout the region, Arvig provides residential and business internet, television, phone and security services. Additionally, Arvig provides a wide variety of business technology solutions. Visit arvig.com for additional information.