The Biden-Harris administration has announced $930 million will be thrown into expanding and strengthening America's high-speed internet access.
The US Department of Commerce's National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) announced $930,021,354.34 to expand high-speed Internet infrastructure across 35 states. According to the Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo, internet access is "no longer a luxury," and through the Middle Mile program, nearly a billion dollars will be invested in providing the infrastructure needed to "connect communities, military bases, and Tribal lands to the Internet, lower the cost of access, and increase bandwidth."
According to the release on the US Department of Commerce website, there are more than 260 applications that total $7.47 billion in funding requests. Additionally, the projects are expected to result in an additional 12,000 miles of new fiber cable being laid across the country. Notably, these new miles of fiber cable will be laid in the rural areas of Alaska, Texas, and dozens of other places where large gaps in connectivity exist.
"Much like how the interstate highway system connected every community in America to regional and national systems of highways, this program will help us connect communities across the country to regional and national networks that provide quality, affordable high-speed Internet access," said Gina Raimondo
"The Middle Mile program is a force multiplier in our efforts to connect everyone in America," said Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Communication and Information Alan Davidson. "Middle Mile infrastructure brings capacity to our local networks and lowers the cost for deploying future local networks. These grants will help build the foundation of networks that will in turn connect every home in the country to affordable, reliable high-speed Internet service."
New Middle Mile Grants
- The middle mile projects will cover over 350 counties across 35 states and Puerto Rico.
- The projects will deploy over 12,000 miles of new fiber that will pass within 1,000 feet of 6,961 community anchor institutions.
- All projects use future-proof fiber as the primary technology.
- Awardees are investing an additional $848.46 million of outside match funding into the projects.
- Grants span from $2.7 million to $88.8 million, with an average award amount of $26.6 million.