BARC Electric Cooperative Moves Foreword with Broadband Project

  • BARC Electric Cooperative (BARC)
MILLBORO, VA – BARC Electric Cooperative (BARC), which serves more than 13,000 members in Bath, Allegheny, Rockbridge, Highland and Augusta counties, is moving forward with a $66 million fiber-to-the-home project that will make high-speed Internet available to both BARC and non-BARC members over the next seven to eight years. Last week, BARC’s board of directors approved loan documents, and approval assurances from BARC’s lender have strengthened BARC’s resolve to move forward with this important project.

The first phase of BARC’s system-wide project encompasses over 400 miles of fiber serving over 4,100 homes and business. “We are very excited that that we are moving forward with the design and construction of Phase 1 of the network,” said BARC CEO Mike Keyser. “I want to thank our CrowdFiber backers for their patience during the development phase.”

Electric Cooperatives Spearheading Rural Broadband Deployment
BARC was created in 1938 to bring electricity to rural Virginia, and the similarities are striking between rural electrification and high-speed Internet service. “Electric cooperatives across the country are poised to lead the way in rural broadband deployment,” continued Keyser. “We are proud to be leading the way in Virginia. As a not-for-profit, mission-based organization, we are solely focused on serving our customers with broadband just as we did with electricity 75 years ago.”

Construction on the first phase of the project is expected to begin in the next nine months, with the cooperative installing over 400 miles of fiber-optic cable that will serve the cooperative’s own electric system communication needs and make direct fiber access available to the more than 4,100 homes and businesses in the first phase of the project. “We have expanded eligibility for free fiber service drops to the first 1,850 customers who pre-register on our CrowdFiber website and who ultimately take service as a subscriber," added Keyser. "After we reach 1,850 subscribers, subsequent customers will have to pay a connection charge.”

As vendors are selected and agreements reached, BARC will begin contacting its pre-registered customers in the Phase 1 eligible area with details on packages and pricing. For complete information about the details of the project, visit the project website:


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