Citizens will be closing at 2:00 PM on Wednesday, January 20th, 2021 for Water Maintenance by Public Service Authority.
We will continue to assist customers online and by phone 540.745.2111 or 276.637.6485

Citizens Still Serving Community while Office is Closed to Public
Valuable Corona Virus Resources

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Customers of Citizens Cablevision now have the opportunity to view local church services. According to Hari Berzins, Video Production Editor of Citizens, four local churches have committed to supplying pre-recorded church services to be uploaded to the company’s CCTV Channel 20.  

Citizens posts the weekly programming schedule online at https://citizens.coop/cctv/ and on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/citizenstelephone/?ref=aymt_homepage_panel.  Current programming is as follows:

  • Saturdays: 9:00am: Beaver Creek Church of the Brethren, Pastor Marvin Wade
  • 9:30am: The Seventh Day: Revelations From the Lost Pages of History
  • Sundays: 8:30am: Beaver Creek Church of the Brethren, Pastor Marvin Wade
  • 9:00am: Faith Baptist Church, Pastor Warren Brown
  • 5:30pm: The Seventh Day: Revelations From the Lost Pages of History
  • 6:30pm: Shawsville Congregational Holiness Church, Pastor Wes Conner

The new programming is available to viewers of Citizens Cablevision in Floyd, Ft. Chiswell, and New Castle.   For more information about the new Citizens TV service visit www.citizens.coop, stop by the office located at 220 Webbs Mill Road in Floyd, or call 540.745.2111/276.637.6485. Any church interested in submitting services should contact Emily Gruver at 540.745.9552 or hariberzins@citizens.coop for instructions on how to upload services.

Citizens is a locally-owned Cooperative located in Floyd, VA, providing quality service, excellent support and advanced technology. Citizens offers voice, video, data, and security solutions to residents and businesses in Floyd, Ft. Chiswell and New Castle.

Donations Accepted At: 

  • Dollar General
  • Citizens
  • Floyd Pharmacy
  • Slaughters Supermarket

STUFF THE BUS EVENT 9am – 6pm on
Saturday, July 30th at Walmart, Christiansburg

NEEDS LIST:

Backpack, Lunchbox, Binder, Folders with pockets, Spiral notebooks,
Notebook paper, Erasable ballpoint pens, No. 2 pencils, Highlighters, Pens,
Pink erasers, Safety scissors, Washable markers, Colored pencils/Crayons, Glue
sticks, Pointed scissors, Ruler, 3” x 5” Index cards, 5-tab index dividers, 3 or
5-subject spiral notebooks, Protractor, Compass, Graph paper, Calculator

If you or someone you know needs assistance in Floyd County,
please contact Floyd County Emergency Assistance Program
at (540) 745-2102.

floyd-seal

Citizens is proud to announce the following Scholarship opportunities:

Foundation for Rural Service Scholarship:

The Foundation for Rural Service (FRS) offers an annual college scholarship program to help further higher education among rural youth. FRS awards a one-time $2,500 scholarships to students from rural America for their first year of college, university or vocational-technical school. Each student is sponsored by an NTCA member company.

The application for the FRS College Scholarship Program is available each October for the following year’s program. Applications must be postmarked to FRS by March 3rd of each year and winners will be announced by May 1st of that year.

Foundation for Rural Services Youth Program frs.org

Virginia Cable Telecommunications Association Scholarship:

 

The VCTA and the Donald A. Perry Foundation are launching the 2016 Virginia’s Future Leaders Scholarship Program. This year they will be awarding $100,000 to Virginia students. Please find the 2016 Application and Rules, as well as their press release at vcta.com.

The deadline for this year’s program is April 24, 2016. The Virginia’s Future Leader’s Scholarship is open to Virginia residents only, attending an undergraduate 2 or 4 year program at a Virginia institution of higher learning for the 2016-2017 academic year.

Virginia’s Future Leaders Scholarship Program ​vcta.com

AMC Networks is Demanding Significant Rate Increase and Carriage of Low-Rated Channels in Latest Contract Renewal.
Floyd, VA – December 28, 2015 – Contract negotiations between media giant AMC Networks and Citizens  could lead to an interruption of service. If an agreement is not reached by December 31, 2015, AMC Networks could force Citizens to remove AMC, WE and IFC from the line-up.
Citizens, along with over 700 other small cable operators across the nation, is currently in negotiations with AMC Networks, owner of AMC, WE, Sundance, BBC, and IFC, to continue offering AMC’s channels to their customers. The current contract expires December 31, which means all existing networks and programming will remain available throughout the rest of 2015. Additional information and updates are available at www.TVOnMySide.com, a web site that helps educate members on how these type negotiations directly impact cable rates.
“Under the current proposal from AMC Networks, carriage beyond December 31 includes a significant cost increase that ultimately results in increased rates for our members. Customers do not like to see their TV bill go up and we, as the provider, do  not like increasing fees” stated Greg Sapp, Citizens CEO & General Manager.
“We are fully prepared to pay a fair price for the AMC programming our members want, but when huge companies such as AMC Networks demand an unprecedented increase in its monthly fees, we believe it’s our responsibility to take a stand,” added Sapp.
Citizens is a member of the National Cable Television Cooperative (NCTC) which represents over 850 independent cable companies across the United States. Members can opt in to have the NCTC negotiate with program providers and others on their behalf, which is currently the case with AMC Networks. By aggregating volume discounts, local TV providers can pass cost savings on to their customer allowing them to compete with larger national competitors.
For more information call 540.745.2111. Citizens Cablevision is a subsidiary of Citizens Telephone Cooperative providing telephone, Internet, and TV to Floyd County and surrounding communities. Citizens is located at 220 Webbs Mill Road in Floyd. Lobby hours are 8am-6pm Monday – Friday; 9am – 1pm on Saturday.

During the printing of our recent billing cycle, we experienced a Printing Error. Mistakenly, EVERY invoice was printed with a “PAST DUE” notice on the payment stub. If your bill is in good standing, please disregard the message. We apologize for any confusion it may have caused. If you have any questions, feel free to call us at 540-745-2111. Again we apologize for this printing error.

On Thursday, Feb. 26, the Federal Communications Commission voted to apply Net Neutrality rules to the nation’s broadband networks.

In layman’s terms, this means the government has issued some requirements to internet service providers.  Internet providers are not allowed to “block”, “throttle”, or give “paid prioritization” to internet traffic.

To flush this out further, internet providers cannot block lawful content from users; nor can providers throttle, or intentionally slow down, internet speeds in order to balance out traffic or minimize bandwidth congestion.  Additionally, internet providers cannot give ‘fast lane’ speed priority to companies with the deep pockets willing to pay top dollar for faster speeds.

While Thursday’s ruling will remain in effect, it will likely be challenged in the courts.  Those issuing the challenges are concerned that government involvement ultimately means a lack of privacy.  They also fear that government involvement will lead to higher costs and inefficiencies as arguably evidenced in other federally regulated programs.

Citizens does not have an official position on this matter at this time.  As always, our ultimate goal is to offer smart, sensible, quality services to you, our customers.  Doing so will ensure that your locally owned provider can continue serving, supporting and enhancing Southwest Virginia for decades to come.

Citizens is proud to announce the following Scholarship opportunities:

Foundation for Rural Service Scholarship:

The Foundation for Rural Service (FRS) offers an annual college scholarship program to help further higher education among rural youth. FRS awards a one-time $2,500 scholarships to students from rural America for their first year of college, university or vocational-technical school. Each student is sponsored by an NTCA member company.

The application for the FRS College Scholarship Program is available each October for the following year’s program. Applications must be postmarked to FRS by March 3rd of each year and winners will be announced by May 1st of that year.

Foundation for Rural Services Youth Program frs.org

Virginia Cable Telecommunications Association Scholarship:

 

The VCTA and the Donald A. Perry Foundation are launching the 2015 Virginia’s Future Leaders Scholarship Program. This year they will be awarding $100,000 to Virginia students. Please find the 2015 Application and Rules, as well as their press release at vcta.com.

The deadline for this year’s program is April 24, 2015. The Virginia’s Future Leader’s Scholarship is open to Virginia residents only, attending an undergraduate 2 or 4 year program at a Virginia institution of higher learning for the 2015-2016 academic year.

Virginia’s Future Leaders Scholarship Program ​vcta.com

FLOYD, VA – Citizens Telephone Cooperative (Citizens) recently announced plans to upgrade facilities to increase broadband speeds in its service areas. “It’s been in our plans for several years now and we have recently started the construction phase. Increasing broadband speeds in our service area is necessary to meet our customer demands for faster Internet connections and increases opportunities for economic development. Increased speeds will be achieved through a variety of technologies with the new top download speed of 100Mbps for residential customers. The current top speed available to our Business Ethernet customers is 10Gbps (10,000Mbps) symmetrical and we are working to increase that to 100Gbps (100,000Mbps). The deployment of these technologies provides flexibility for future products and services requested by customers” stated Greg Sapp, CEO & General Manager of the Cooperative.

 
The investment in upgrades is costly for Citizens, but is necessary to continue our cooperative mission. Eligible subscribers will see their speeds increase, but will not see rate increases unless they opt for even higher speed services.

 
“Citizens continually monitors technology and innovation to determine the viability of future offerings for our subscribers. This project will be handled in phases and will be marketed as a CitiZip branded service to highlight the greater speeds. The first phase will occur in and around the Town of Floyd with available download speeds of 10Mbps, 25Mbps, 50Mbps, and 100Mbps. Upgrade plans within the town limits will be shared at an upcoming Town Council Meeting with deployment set to begin in September 2014 stated Dennis Reece, COO and Assistant General Manager.”

 
Citizens Telephone Cooperative is a full service provider of residential and business landline and cellular telephone service, high speed Internet services and digital video services. Analog cable is also provided in portions of its service area. PC Repair, virus protection, web design and hosting services are also available. Systematical Business Ethernet is also available as well as Home Security and Citizens Medical Alert.

Citizens, the local digital and analog television provider is in negotiations with Viacom, owner of MTV Networks, to continue offering their channels, but believes the current proposal from Viacom would have costly repercussions for the company’s customers. While we are restricted from talking about specific rates, Viacom demanded a rate increase that’s 40 times the rate of inflation*. Imagine pulling up to the gas pump and finding that gas has gone from $3.50 a gallon to $6.00 – overnight. That’s the scale of some of these large increases. In addition, Viacom may demand we drop their networks if we don’t agree to their proposal.

Citizens is an independent business located in Floyd County, offering programming and broadband services throughout Floyd, Ft. Chiswell and New Castle and employing just under 60 people.

“Citizens has added a new web page, TVOnMySide.com to educate our customers on rising programming costs.” Across the country, networks are substantially increasing their fees to cable companies, which affect customers directly.

“Viacom owns popular networks such as MTV, Nickelodeon and Comedy Central. But in order to offer these, the cable networks require us to carry networks that are not as well-known, networks such as, but not limited to, MTV2, MTV Hits and VH1 Classic.” explained Greg Sapp, General Manager.

We want our customers to know that fees from these networks account for the bulk of monthly cable bills. Today’s entertainment marketplace is changing rapidly, and we have seen consolidation among major media companies. These mergers allow large programming companies significant leverage over independent cable companies such as Citizens.

Our goal is to protect our customers from significant programming fee increases. We pay programmers such as Viacom a fee per channel per month per customer for their programming. When these contracts conclude, we negotiate new agreements and that concludes that business deal. But when a multibillion dollar company such as Viacom demands an unprecedented increase in its monthly fees, we believe it’s our responsibility to take a stand.

These large increases impact all of us throughout Floyd County and the communities we serve. We want to make sure our customers know that we are working on their behalf.

We urge our customers to get the facts and be informed by visiting TVOnMySide.com.

For more information, contact Citizens at 540-745-2111, 276-637-6485

Over the last several weeks, we have noticed an increase of robo-calls within our service area. While robo-calls are not a new phenomenon, this latest surge in calls has proven both annoying and frustrating. In addition, there appears to be two different scenarios affecting customers of Citizens Telephone Cooperative at this time.

In the first scenario, the offending call appears to be placed from a 473 area code from someone who seems to be in distress. This area code is international for Grenada. Those who call the number back are charged for each minute they are on the line and costs can add up into the thousands of dollars.

The second scenario is more widespread and involves calls from multiple telephone numbers from California to Iowa to Florida and is often times accompanied by various names in the caller ID field. Upon answering the call, the following message is heard: “Hello, this is an automated fax delivery system. If this is not a fax, press 2.”

In most cases the numbers and names are “spoofed” (see below) which complicates the process used to identify and prosecute those responsible for placing the unwanted calls.

Caller ID spoofing

Caller ID Spoofing is the practice of deliberately falsifying the telephone number and/or name relayed as the Caller ID information to disguise the identity of the calling party.

Caller ID Spoofing is only prohibited for the purposes of intentionally defrauding or otherwise causing harm, or wrongfully obtaining anything of value.

More information about Caller ID Spoofing is available on the FCC’s website at the following web address:  fcc.gov/guides/caller-id-and-spoofing

Unfortunately, there is no fail-safe tool for stopping these calls, primarily because it is so easy for scammers to fake the location from which they are calling by using the “spoofing” method. In addition, criminals here or abroad do not care that they are breaking the law-they just care about collecting cash without getting caught.

The Federal Trade Commission has offered the following tips to help cut down on the number of unwanted calls:

  1.  Never respond to a robo-call.  The FTC suggests that you do not answer the calls. They also warn not to “press 1” or “press 2”.  If you respond by pressing any number it will probably just lead to more robo-calls because the company calling will now know it has reached a working number or a “live” prospect.
  2. Don’t give out personal information.  If you do receive an unsolicited call from a company you do business with and the person on the other end of the line starts to ask for personal information, tell the caller that you will call them back on their number of record.
  3. Report these calls.  The FTC encourages you to report your experience to them on-line via the agency’s National Do Not Call Registry or by calling 888-382-1222.

Keep in mind that when a legitimate telemarketer calls you, the caller must promptly provide the following:  company name, the purpose of the call, a description of what they are selling and any restrictions to the goods being sold.  The Do Not Call Registry does not prohibit calls from political groups, charities and telephone surveyors.

What can citizens do to help?

As mentioned previously, there is nothing that will prevent all of the unwanted calls, but the following calling features are available through Citizens as options that might help:

Anonymous Call Rejection

Allows you to reject calls from numbers that have activated the privacy feature and prevents the delivery of their number or name to your phone. When ACR is active any privacy marked calls are directed to an announcement and your telephone does not ring. This feature automatically comes with caller ID.The feature will remain ON until you turn it off. If you have Select Call Acceptance and/or Priority Ringing, calls from numbers included in your list will be connected through to your telephone, even when the call is marked for privacy.

Telemarketing Screening Advanced* & Basic

Telemarketer Call Screening (TCS) allows you to stop being bothered by calls from telemarketers. Most telemarketing organizations “block” their calling number, so they are identified as “unknown”. TCS intercepts these“ unknown” callers. Your phone won’t even ring. Instead, the TCS system tells them that the person that they are calling does not accept calls from telemarketers. The TCS system will not disturb callers who provide their calling number, or have their number listed as “private”. Since not all “unknown” calls are from telemarketers, the TCS system informs these callers that if they wish to complete the call to please dial “1”. Any friends or family with “unknown” listings can still ring through to you. * Telemarketing Screening Advanced will screen unknown or out-of-area numbers. Requires Caller ID.** Telemarketing Screening Basic will screen all incoming calls.

For additional information, contact Citizens at 540-745-2111 or join the National Do Not Call Registry by calling 888-382-1222 or online at donotcall.gov.

Citizens, a full-service communications, and entertainment provider headquartered in Floyd, Virginia announced today that the veteran, rural, landline telephone company will once again provide cellular phone service to Floyd County and surrounding communities. The locally-owned Cooperative will be a carrier on the largest national cellular network and will offer a variety of cell phones and calling plans for individuals and businesses.

“Our former wireless agent agreement was dissolved over a year and a half ago. Since that time, we have had numerous requests to offer cellular service again.” stated Lori Saltus, Citizens’ EVP of Customer Relations. “One of the many benefits of being a member of a Cooperative is that we are local and we LISTEN to our customers. We are happy to announce that Citizens is once again serving cellular phone service.”

Citizens Cellular calling plans range from a $9.99 Talk Any Time “pay as you go” to Unlimited Talk, Text & Data for Individual and Share Plans. The company will have plans suited for all levels of use and complexity. Majority of calling plans include “Anytime” minutes and offer Unlimited Nights and Weekend minutes. In fact, Citizens Wireless provides customers with additional 120 minutes per day of night calling by extended calling times from 7 p.m. – 5:59 a.m. (most national night and weekend call provider’s hours are 9:00 p.m. to 6 a.m.).

Most call plans offered by Citizens include free Mobile-to-Mobile minutes to ANYONE on the nation-wide network; not just between Citizens cellular customers. “We realize wireless is becoming a way of life.” stated Greg Sapp, Citizens General Manager. “We want to offer affordable means to have communication services when and where you need it. It’s not a big profit maker, but it’s the matter of bringing it all together for our customers on one convenient monthly invoice with discounts for multiple services. It’s not necessary to deal with the national companies any longer, when you can receive the same nationwide coverage, competitive calling plans, calling features, and customer support locally,” says Sapp.

For more information, contact Citizens at 540.745.2111 in Floyd; in Ft. Chiswell call 276.637.6485.

communityShow

Citizens, your local voice, video, and data provider recently announced the launch of a daily community show scheduled to air on Citizens Digital Channel 20, Analog Channel 2 beginning Thursday, September 12, 2013. “The Community Show is a show about the community for the community” stated Casey Worley, Anchor of The Community Show.

The Community Show is designed to air daily and will be played at 9am Thursday through Wednesday. New weekly programming will begin on Thursday of each week giving highlights to many weekend events in the area.

Citizens is partnering Tri-Cities Newspaper; parent company of The Floyd Press and The Enterprise in Wythe County for news and sports to create informational and entertaining programming. The Community Show will have three segments: What’s Going On — a community calendar of events; Sports Action — a schedule and highlights of seasonal local sports; Something to Chat About — a segment focused on events and activities in the communities surrounding Floyd and Ft.Chiswell.

“Citizens wants to bring it all together for our viewers and the residents in the markets we serve (in Floyd and Ft. Chiswell) stated Lori Saltus, EVP of Customer Relations. Citizens was founded by involved community members and we carry on that same dedication by creating a television show dedicated to our community.”

Citizens began this venture several years ago by recording and rebroadcasting Floyd County High School Football and the Floyd County Christmas Parade. Most recently, Citizens broadcast the Class of 2013 Floyd County High School Graduation. Citizens continues with football and has added volleyball for the 2013-2014 season. Plans are to capture Spring sports, community events and more.

“I look forward to working with members of the community to share the good news that is taking place in our areas. We welcome pre-produced content and will work to produce a quality segment for our viewers.” stated Worley.

For more information or to order a DVD of a select game or a season, contact Citizens at
540-745-2111 or email DVD@citizens.coop. Tune in to Citizens TV Channel 20 (Analog Channel 2) to keep up to date on the latest programming.

On July 31, 2013, Citizens Telephone Cooperative, Inc. (Citizens) announced the completion of construction on its BTOP (Broadband Technologies Opportunities Program) CCI (Comprehensive Community Infrastructure) Project. The $11.5 million project, titled New River Valley – Regional Open Access Network (NRV-ROAN), was completed on schedule and on budget. The completed project placed 200 miles of fiber with the purpose of providing broadband access for economic development, research, education, emergency response, and health care. The NRV-ROAN is a collaboration between Citizens and the New River Valley Network Wireless Authority (NRVNWA), which received a $9.2 million grant under the Broadband Technologies Opportunities Program (BTOP) by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) and a $396,622 grant by the Virginia Tobacco Commission for this project.

The NRV-ROAN project meets the needs of many community anchor institutions in the New River Valley region of Virginia who have previously reported being unable to access high-speed, affordable broadband services. “This ‘middle-mile’ project covers a seven-county region including Wythe, Pulaski, Floyd, Giles, Montgomery, Roanoke and Botetourt Counties. The 200 Gbps network addition includes eight primary interconnection points that are strategically positioned to provide service to unserved and/or undeserved areas and to tie into other open access fiber networks. “This network allows wireless and other internet service providers to offer broadband to areas where service was previously unavailable, or areas that were determined to be economically infeasible.” said Dennis Reece, COO & Assistant General Manager of Citizens.

Because of this new expansion, more than 50 Community Anchor Institutions (CAIs) including Virginia Tech, Radford University, New River Community College, local high schools, public safety entities, health-care facilities and government facilities, now have access to symmetrical speeds between 5Mbps and 10Gbps (10,000Mbps). To date, 39 Community Anchor Institutions (CAIs) and nine businesses have been connected as a result of this project.

The NRV-ROAN, along with Citizens’ existing Open Access Fiber Network, extends over 438 miles and spans ten counties (Roanoke, Montgomery, Wythe, Pulaski, Floyd, Giles, Botetourt, Patrick, Carroll, Grayson), ten towns (Blacksburg, Christiansburg, Wytheville, Floyd, Pulaski, Dublin, Hillsville, Independence, Stuart, Pearisburg), and three cities (Salem, Radford, and Galax). This combined network passes by or through more than a dozen industrial parks and multiple small business incubators.

Citizens is a member-owned telephone cooperative headquartered in the Floyd, Virginia, providing communication services within the region since 1914. For more information about Citizens and the services offered, visit at citizens.coop. Click Here to download a pdf of this release.

Citizens Telephone Cooperative (Citizens) is a leading-edge technology provider. Daily, the company that employs around 60 people, researches, tests, and deploys upgrades in technology that are unknown to the customer. “We are in the process of integrating multiple systems for efficiency and to provide better support of our customers. While working with two of our vendors and updating data between systems on Tuesday, June 4, 2013, we ran across a glitch which was undetected in our testing or the testing by our vendors. That glitch accidentally sent out commands that reset several hundred DSL modems back to factory default. We were able to promptly find the issue, stop the process, and were able to get most customers back online and working by 7PM that evening. However, we still had a few hundred modems that did not come back online on their own and needed to be reconfigured by our staff” stated Dennis Reece, COO & Assistant General Manager.

After the discovery of the issue and the impact, Citizens employees went into triage mode and began offering extended hours, notifications via various medias, and in-home visits to quickly reconfigure the affected equipment to get the customer back up and working. While this outage did not affect the majority of customers, this was an unusual and embarrassing occurrence for our company.

“We apologize for the outage and for the inconvenience this has caused our customers. We appreciate the understanding and support shown from our members. It is our mission to provide quality service, excellent support, and advanced technology. We do not take this situation lightly and ensure our customers that we are a strong, stable, and reliable company. Each employee of Citizens has shown their commitment to go the extra mile during this recent outage.” stated Greg Sapp, CEO & General Manager.

You may be experiencing any of the following:

  1. Someone tells you they tried to call you but the call didn’t get through or the call rang on their end but your phone did not ring.
  2. A call came through but the quality was poor.
  3. A call came through but the caller ID was incorrect.

Citizens Telephone Cooperative strives to provide quality service at all times. However, people who live in rural areas, all around the country are reporting that calls to them are not getting through, or they are receiving calls with poor quality.

Please be assured, this issue is not within your Cooperative’s network. The problem starts with the long distance carrier used by the customer who placed the call. The problem can only be resolved by the carrier used by the customer who makes the call.

This nationwide epidemic is negatively affecting local businesses, public safety, and our relationship with our customers. Rural carriers have complained to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and state agencies. The FCC has created a task force to investigate and address the issue and rural telco advocates are encouraging swift and severe action against all of the providers at the center of the problem. We are hopeful that the large nationwide providers involved in these issues or the FCC will act to address these problems.

In the meantime, here’s what you can do:

  • Ask for the name of the Long Distance carrier used by the person trying to reach you.
  • Call Citizens with the info including the name of the carrier, the number calling, and the time of day if possible so we can contact the carrier on your behalf to try and resolve the issue.

For more info:

Citizens Telephone Cooperative (Citizens) recently announced the expansion of its existing open-access fiber network in rural Virginia, making affordable, high-speed broadband service a reality for under-served and unserved areas. On Wednesday, April 25, representatives from local and state organizations joined for a ribbon cutting ceremony signifying the joint endeavors of the open-access project and the renaming of the NRV Competitiveness Center to the NRV Business Center.

ribbon1

This project meets the need of many community anchor institutions in the New River Valley region of Virginia who report being unable to access high-speed, affordable broadband services. In an effort to address this problem, NTIA (National Telecommunications and Information Administration) awarded a $9.2 million dollar grant to Citizens Telephone Cooperative (Citizens) to extend its open-access fiber network into unserved and under-served communities in the region. The project, New River Valley – Regional Open Access Network or NRV-ROAN, is an $11.5 million dollar project to construct 186 miles of middle mile fiber with access in remote communities with the purpose of providing access for economic development, research, education, emergency response, and health care. The grant proposal was a collaboration between Citizens and the New River Valley Network Wireless Authority (NRVNWA).

This “middle-mile” project traverses a seven county region which includes Wythe, Pulaski, Floyd, Giles, Montgomery, Roanoke and Botetourt. Initially this 186 mile network addition will be 100Gbps (100,000Mbps) and include eight primary interconnection points that are strategically positioned to provide service to unserved and/or under-served areas and to tie into other open access fiber networks. This will allow wireless and other internet service providers to offer services to areas where service was previously unavailable; or areas that were determined to be economically infeasible.

ribbon2

“The impact and opportunities this joint venture will provide on these rural communities by allowing them to gain access to high quality, high speed, and affordable networks is paramount.” says Dennis Reece, COO & Assistant General Manager of Citizens.

Because of this new expansion, more than 50 community anchor institutions including Virginia Tech, Radford University, New River Community College, public safety entities, health-care facilities and government facilities will have access to symmetrical speeds between 5Mbps and 10Gbps (10,000Mbps) through Citizens’ extended open-access network.