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eCorridors - enhancing communities with the speed of light
Virginia Tech
Residents and businesses asked to help identify areas in need of broadband
Taken from Town of Blacksburg, VA : News & Updates External Site
Written By Blacksburg Transit
November 11, 2014

In an effort to evaluate Internet access in the New River Valley, Virginia Tech’s eCorridors program is asking residents to test the speed of their Internet connection using the Accelerate Virginia speed test. To participate, run the two-minute Internet speed test from your home Internet connection; www.acceleratevirginia.org/speedtest Residents may also obtain a report of their Internet access statistics and learn how their connectivity compares to that of others in their zip code by clicking on “proceed” after the speed test is finished and then “view my summary”.

Often referred to as high-speed Internet service, broadband allows faster and richer interactions between citizens and government, businesses and customers, educators and students, libraries and patrons, and families and friends. Along with other sources, the data collected by the Accelerate Virginia Internet speed testing campaign will provide a more accurate understanding of broadband availability, identify areas potentially in need for improved services and support Virginia’s state-wide broadband mapping initiative.

With a focus on affordable access to broadband, the Blacksburg Broadband Steering Committee was formed in 2013. Made up of representatives from the Blacksburg business community including the Roanoke-Blacksburg Technology Council, the Blacksburg Partnership, Town of Blacksburg, the New River Valley Planning District Commission, and Virginia Tech, the Steering Committee is working to develop a model for gigabit-speed network that can make affordable, high-speed internet available for every home, business and institution in the community.

The Broadband Steering Committee is also releasing a Request for Information (RFI) soliciting ideas and recommendations for developing, upgrading, and expanding broadband infrastructure in the Blacksburg area while improving access for residents and businesses. Responses to the RFI will be used to propose a model for deploying gigabit-speed broadband using the Blacksburg community as the initial service area and eventually replicating the model throughout the region for all who wish to participate.

Public, private and community organizations, or entities with a commercial interest in the development of last-mile, high-speed broadband, are encouraged to reply and provide ideas and recommendations. Potential respondents should contact Christy Straight at 540-639-9313 or cstraight@nrvpdc.org for more information. The RFI can be found at www.nrvpdc.org.

If you have questions or problems running the speed test; or if your residence is in a location that does not have any available Internet service and you’d like us to make note of that, please contact Jean Plymale at (540) 231-2270 or vplymale@vt.edu.

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