January 2023 Update from BrightRidge Broadband
Status of Broadband Deployment
The partnership between the City of Johnson City and BrightRidge allows us to accelerate our fiber broadband buildout to city residents by two years. Johnson City has committed $2.3 million in ARPA funds to expand the number of serviceable homes and businesses from a budgeted 5,800 to 10,112 in the current fiscal year (July 2022 to June 2023). This results in aerial fiber construction of 96% of Phase-6 and 40% of Phase-7 being one to two years earlier
The map to the left shows the progress in our Phase-5 and eastern Phase-7 build areas with green shading indicating completion and yellow shading representing pending construction. The current build out is for locations with overhead utility lines. We are over 50% complete with the fiber broadband deployment in this section, with over 3,300 homes and businesses that can sign up for our broadband services now.
Once the Phase-5 area is completed, we will be relocating our construction crews to build Phase-6. This includes the areas with overhead utility lines from the “I26/N Roan St” intersection north to Piney Flats. The map below provides a visual of the Phase-6 location. We anticipate completion of this section by June, 2023.
BrightRidge Broadband continues to expand its nation-leading high-speed internet services, connecting people who lack access and bringing the next generation of internet infrastructure to our community.
BrightRidge currently serves more than 9,000 homes and businesses with broadband and telephone services and is adding hundreds more each month. This service already improves the ability of 27,000 local residents to engage in remote education, improve digital skills, work from home, receive tele-healthcare, connect with family, and access many selections of video entertainment products.
Status of the Washington County and Greene County broadband grant applications
BrightRidge submitted multiple broadband grant applications to TN-ECD (Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development) to fund the extension of fiber broadband to 1,824 unserved (lacking access to 25Mb/3Mb internet) homes and businesses in rural Washington County and 210 unserved customers in Greene County. Both Washington County and Greene County commissions approved matching funds for the required local match of these applications.
This broadband grant application was officially declined by the state as of August 1st for the current funding opportunity, but TN-ECD has suggested BrightRidge Broadband will have another opportunity with the next round of funding. BrightRidge staff did appeal the decision to no avail.
We are extremely disappointed that the grant request was not funded, but we will continue to work each day to find the funding necessary to make this project viable.
The TN-ECD received requests for $1.4 billion in broadband projects against an allocation of $400 million in available funding. State officials indicated that an additional round of grants will be available in 2023 with an expected $1.2 billion available in Tennessee broadband funding. BrightRidge plans to re-submit grant requests for those areas of Washington and Greene county lacking broadband access as soon as the new application opportunity opens.
Streaming Video options
There are many Streaming Video solutions available today which can completely replace your current Cable TV experience and provide flexibility as well as financial savings. BrightRidge is working to assist our customers when selecting the best product to fit their needs.
The BrightRidge Broadband website now has two new comparison resources to allow you to choose the best video solution for your family. These options are MyBundle and Suppose.TV. We encourage you to visit www.mybrightridge.com/video to get personalized recommendations, price comparisons, and find your best options for getting the video content you prefer at the very best price. If you have questions or would like assistance in “cutting the cord”, please call our Customer Service agents at (423) 952-5000 and select option 2 from the phone menu.
Check Your Availability to sign up for BrightRidge Broadband by visiting www.mybrightridge.com.