On February 23 U.S. Senator Mark Warner visited Louisa County to commemorate broadband connection progress in Louisa County. The event took place at Fifty Third Winery where Senator Warner, the Firefly Board, staff and project partners, gathered for a luncheon. Warner spoke to the long-term value of broadband in rural Louisa and the importance of the investment to its residents. “It brings and attracts new opportunities, and it gives kids at least the choice to stay in the community that they love” he said.

  Louisa County Supervisor Duane Adams spoke before Senator Warner and thanked Firefly for the company’s progress.

   “Four years ago, the solution to rural broadband was 20-25 years away. Today the entire county project will be completed by the end of 2025. Louisa will be the first central Virginia county with universal fiber connectivity.”

  Also speaking was Firefly President and CEO Gary Wood who told the crowd that the “speed of light” project couldn’t be done without the help key partners like Rappahannock Energy Cooperative, Dominion Energy and S&N Communications along with a number of other contractors assisting on the project. He also thanked Supervisor Adams for he and the Louisa County Board of Supervisors’ vision to bring affordable internet to all households.

   Firefly anticipates nearly all Louisa County homes to have the option to connect by the fall. Many around the lake are already being served. The Buckner area of Bumpass, Plum Tree and Fredericks Hall is scheduled to be online by this summer.

  Construction of a fiber optic network is a complex and lengthy process.  Numerous contractors are involved, and the entire process can take six to 12 months to complete, depending upon the length of the circuit, the terrain and soils, weather and other external factors.

   Firefly is using Rappahannock Electric Cooperative poles in many cases to bring fiber to homes. Much of the roadside construction residents are noticing are contractors pulling fiber through orange conduit installed in the ground adjacent to the power lines. Once the fiber is placed, splices will be made at each point and placed in an underground pedestal. The next step is service drop construction where crews extend the fiber underground from the pedestal to the pre-registered home or business and leave the coils ready for drop splicing and final install.