Roanoke Valley Broadband Authority lays fiber-optic cable in Roanoke and Salem

The Roanoke Valley Broadband Authority (RVBA) has reached a major milestone in its quest to create an open-access municipal fiber-optic network. The group announced that its contractors have completed deployment of 47-mi of underground fiber cable beneath Roanoke and Salem, VA.

The Roanoke Valley Broadband Authority (RVBA) has reached a major milestone in its quest to create an open-access municipal fiber-optic network. The group announced that its contractors have completed deployment of 47-mi of underground fiber cable beneath Roanoke and Salem, VA.

Thompson & Litton and USC (Utility Service Contractors) completed the fiber-optic cable installation on April 5 at the Valley View point of presence after breaking ground last summer. The new conduit network contains 144 fibers, the RVBA says.

The fiber network, which connects the Roanoke Valley to a pair of international Internet switching facilities, is designed to serve the needs of enterprise-level customers (corporate, government, and education) across the region. The RVBA also hopes the presence of the network will spark additional private sector telecommunications investment by lowering the cost of entry.

"Throughout the new networks' physical build-out process, we worked hard to maximize the projects long-term value while minimizing any inconvenience for Roanoke Valley citizens and visitors. All in all, and thanks to the support of our team of experienced vendor partners, things went very smoothly," according to Frank Smith, executive director of the RVBA. "We used a wide variety of cutting-edge techniques to both plan and build the physical network infrastructure, and these efforts are sure to pay dividends over the long-haul. Now, with outside plant construction complete, our first customers are only weeks away from realizing the results of everyone's hard work."

The RVBA says that local project teams will stress test the network for the next few weeks as well as configure the switching centers for an official service lighting event later this spring.

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