Arvig to Invest Line Extension Grant Funding in Rural Fiber Expansion Projects

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PERHAM, Minn., May 07, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Arvig has been awarded grant funding from the Minnesota Office of Broadband Development’s Broadband Line Extension Connection Program to construct last-mile fiber network infrastructure for high-speed internet to 69 unserved locations. 

Arvig was awarded grants totaling $543,244 from the program after submitting successful lowest-cost bids to provide fiber to the locations. Total project funding is $612,244, with Arvig investing $69,000 to cover additional project costs.

The 69 unserved locations consist of seven projects in these areas: 

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  • Rural Callaway along 260th Avenue
  • Along State Highway 210 east of Henning in Otter Tail County
  • Rural Rochert, including Cotton Lake and the west side of Height of Land Lake
  • Along U.S. Highway 59 and Tee Lake Road south of Detroit Lakes
  • Rural Frazee along 360th Avenue

Construction on some projects could begin as soon as May 2024, with work projected to finish by May 2025.

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 locations access to speeds of up to 1 Gig download and 100Mbps upload. A location is considered unserved if they lack access to a wired service of at least 25Mbps download and 3 Mbps upload.

“The Line Extension Connection Program is a tremendous help to rural internet providers,” said David Arvig, Vice President and COO at Arvig. “This funding not only helps us close the broadband gap in rural Minnesota, but it also helps offset the higher deployment costs that often come with providing internet service to unserved areas in our state.”

The latest grant was awarded as part of Round 2 of the Line Extension Connection program’s funding process. In late 2023, Arvig accepted a separate grant from the program to extend internet service in 118 locations in several lakes-area communities.

“We encourage unserved homes and businesses in the region to apply for this program,” Arvig said. “Interest from the local community is the first step in getting fiber expansion projects like these going.”  

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.

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 [email protected].

About Arvig

Arvig is a local, employee-owned broadband and full-service telecommunications provider headquartered in Perham, Minnesota. 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.

Media Contact:
Rachel Laudenbach, Communications Manager
Arvig | 150 Second Street SW
218.346.8653 | [email protected]

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