Rural Neighborhood Without Internet Installs Its Own Broadband

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LOUISA COUNTY, VA (NEWSPLEX) -- With more people working from home and kids using the Internet to study, broadband Internet has become a need, rather than a luxury.

A rural neighborhood in Louisa County grew tired of waiting for broadband, so residents worked with a company to install it on their own.

Reedy Creek Property Owners Association President Joe Snyder said it's been a long time coming.

"The pole that I'm sitting on right now was bought and paid for by the Reedy Creek Property Owners Association," said Snyder. "The investment that the property owners made in all this is roughly about $5,000."

After trying many options for years, Snyder said they had to take matters into their own hands. Everything was purchased through the neighbors with no additional money from the county.

"Without Internet, basically Louisa and this whole place becomes irrelevant," said Snyder.

Snyder also said it doesn't help the property values. He said one of the first questions homeowners ask is whether the area has broadband, and when realtors say 'no' it drives people elsewhere.

However, starting the process to get the pole and the Ethernet installed wasn't easy.

"This is something that had never been done before," said Snyder. "Louisa didn't have a process to allow us to apply for a permit to do this."

The county had to create the process to apply for a permit and two years later, the broadband company CVA Link struck ground.

CVA Link dug a hole to put the pole purchased by the neighborhood into the ground and the Ethernet cable will run alongside the pole and pass power and data through the antennas.

"The ultimate result of installing these antennas is that we would go to a customers house and install one of these [Customer Premises Equipment] relay to the antenna which would pass bandwidth to it," said CVA Link Technician, Andrew Hollins. "You would run the cable into the house and you have unlimited Internet."

CVA Link's Brian Gilbreth says what normally takes a company months to provide, they can do in hours.

"The key difference is wireless," said Gillbreth. "Our wireless link, will link back instead of having to lay all those miles and man power to bury the cable in the ground."

After three years on the the Property Owners' Board, Snyder says he's happy to see the years of work trying to get broadband, finally come to life.

"This is the end of my term," said Snyder. "I'm really excited that this is the final piece that I'm delivering to the Property Owners' Association."



 
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