Nelson County businesses and residents will have access to a new high-speed fiber optic and an expanded wireless network starting next month.
Charlottesville-based Blue Ridge Internetworks will manage the new network, which spans about 30 miles and runs from Afton in the north, through Greenfield and Lovingston, and ends at Colleen in southern part of the county.
The project’s overall $3.1 million cost was covered by federal grants and local contributions. Blue Ridge InternetWorks will also act as a private Internet service provider, using the network to deliver high-speed Internet services to Nelson County.
Right now, residents “have dial up, satellite and a wireless [Internet service provider] that has some antennas on some towers and water tower-type locations, but the service coverage is not complete by any means,” said Baylor Fooks, a co-founder of Blue Ridge Internetworks. All of the previous options, he added, are generally slow and unreliable.
On Thursday, Fooks said the company fielded more than 50 inquires about the new service.
“This will be thousands of times faster than the existing service, but more importantly it’ll be a higher quality network with less latency and jitter,” he said.
Although placing much of the infrastructure for the network underground increased the project’s cost, Fooks said the fact the network escaped damage during this summer’s storms proved that was a good decision.
“Our goal is to bring affordable first class Internet services to Nelson County,” Nelson County Supervisor Thomas Bruguiere said in a recent announcement. “We are thrilled to have Blue Ridge on the Nelson County team.” Bruguiere is also chairman of the county’s Broadband Authority.
Nelson County residents and businesses interested in the new broadband Internet connection may visit briworks.com/access/broadband-in-nelson for more information.