High Speed Internet Now Available Near Still Bluff
Pender County, NC – FOCUS Broadband has announced that it now has high-speed internet service available to its first customers in Pender County. Residents and businesses located near the Still Bluff community along Morgan Road and Bethel Road in western Pender County can now call to order high-speed internet with speeds of up to 1 Gigabit as well as telephone service, digital cable TV, and home security and automation services from FOCUS Broadband. Additional areas near the Canetuck community are expected to be made available in the coming weeks.
“We are thrilled to finally be able to offer service in Pender County and bring high-speed internet to rural communities that desperately need it,” said Keith Holden, FOCUS Broadband’s CEO and General Manager. “A number of issues brought about by the COVID-19 Pandemic have hampered our early progress, but we anticipate service being made available in more areas early in the new year with new phases coming online thereafter.” Areas around Atkinson, Currie, Holly Shelter, and Hampstead are currently under construction.
The Pender County project is being made possible using a $21.6 million dollar grant from the USDA ReConnect Grant Program. FOCUS Broadband will provide up to $7.2 million in matching funds for the project. More than 7,000 unserved homes and businesses will have access to high-speed internet upon the project’s completion.
Company officials added that they’re able to temporarily connect to Pender County using fiber provided through a partnership with Four County EMC and that they are in the process of building a permanent connection to their Columbus County network. This portion of the project has taken time due to difficulties boring underneath the Black and Cape Fear Rivers.
FOCUS Broadband continues to look for funding opportunities to help bring high-speed internet service to all of Pender County’s underserved areas. At the end of August, FOCUS Broadband was awarded a $4 million dollar grant through the NC Department of Information Technology’s GREAT Grant program to bring high-speed internet to an additional 1,331 homes and businesses located in rural areas which were not included in the 2020 ReConnect Grant award. For the GREAT Grant project, FOCUS Broadband will contribute $547 thousand dollars and Pender County will provide an additional $547 thousand dollars using American Rescue Plan Act funds.
Residents and businesses near the Still Bluff community where service is available can sign up for services from FOCUS Broadband by calling, 833-981-4152. To stay up to date on FOCUS Broadband’s progress to bring high-speed internet to other areas of Pender County, visit www.fasterpender.com.
About FOCUS Broadband
FOCUS Broadband is a member-owned cooperative providing a multitude of communications services, including telephone, business services, wireless, broadband internet, cable television, and home security, in Brunswick County, North Carolina. FOCUS Broadband provides services in additional areas through its wholly owned subsidiary, ATMC, LLC. FOCUS Broadband is the largest communications cooperative in North Carolina and one of the largest in the country. For more information on products and services from FOCUS Broadband, visit www.FOCUSBroadband.com. For more information on FOCUS Broadband’s drive to bring faster internet service to rural Columbus County, visit www.FasterColumbus.com.