Glades Electric secures funding to enhance internet in Basinger and Viking areas

Posted 6/19/23

Glades Electric Cooperative announced it has secured $5,000,000 in funding through...

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Glades Electric secures funding to enhance internet in Basinger and Viking areas


MOORE HAVEN — Glades Electric Cooperative announced it has secured $5 million in funding through Florida’s Broadband Opportunity Program to enhance broadband internet access for underserved communities in Florida. This funding is in addition to an initial Broadband Opportunity Program award of $5 million announced by the co-op in February, bringing its total awards to $10 million.

Glades Electric is partnering with leading rural internet service provider Conexon Connect to launch and deploy a nearly 2,600-mile fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) network with the goal of providing fiber broadband access to all of its approximately 13,600 members.

The current award will fund the construction of 795 miles of the fiber network to serve 1,195 unserved locations within Highlands and Okeechobee Counties with symmetrical (same upload and download speeds) capabilities of up to 2 gigabits per second. It will encompass the communities of Lorida and the Lake Josephine area in Highlands County, as well as Basinger, Viking Estates, and Okeechobee in Okeechobee County.

Glades Electric’s nearly $50 million network is expected to be completed within three years. The Connect, powered by Glades Electric Cooperative, network – with its symmetrical multi-gigabit internet capabilities – will deliver a world-class, future-proof solution to those living and working in Glades territory.

Glades Electric Cooperative is committed to closing the digital divide and improving the quality of life for rural Floridians. With the support of the Broadband Opportunity Program, this transformative project will foster economic growth, educational opportunities, and enhanced connectivity in its communities for years to come.

Glades Electric Cooperative has selected Conexon Connect as a partner to deploy high-speed internet access to all cooperative members. Conexon Connect, formed by rural fiber-optic network design and construction management leader Conexon, will serve as the internet service provider for the cooperative’s fiber network to be built by Conexon.

 The goal is to expand fiber broadband access to all of the co-op’s approximately 13,373 members in Glades, Hendry, Highlands, and Okeechobee counties.

“The abrupt change in our lifestyles during Covid brought to light how far behind in broadband access Florida’s Heartland has been left,” said Jeff Brewington, Glades Electric Cooperative CEO. “We began to research how Glades Electric could be part of the solution, which led us to Conexon to help us bridge the gap in a very affordable way and continue our mission of Neighbors Working for Neighbors.”

Glades Electric, internet, broadband, rural, Lorida