ATLANTA – Gov. Brian Kemp announced Irwin EMC's plans to provide access to reliable, affordable, high-speed fiber broadband service for its 8,400 members. The cooperative has selected Conexon Connect, the internet service provider subsidiary of rural fiber-optic network design and construction management leader Conexon, to lead the project and serve EMC members with fiber broadband.
Together, Irwin EMC and Connect will launch and deploy a 1,900-mile fiber-to-the-home network in south-central Georgia, providing high-speed internet access to 100% of the member homes and businesses it serves in Ben Hill, Berrien, Coffee, Irwin, Tift, Turner, Wilcox and Worth counties.
"Today’s announced broadband project between Irwin EMC and Conexon Connect will have a significant impact on hard-working Georgians by providing new job opportunities, improved education tools, access to telemedicine, and more," Kemp said in a news release. "I know this project will have a direct impact on the lives of south Georgians by ensuring they have access to reliable, high-speed internet."
"I’m grateful for Irwin EMC’s investment in broadband that will expand service over these eight counties in south Georgia," state Sen. Tyler Harper, whose district includes Irwin and surrounding counties, said. "The state Senate has made rural broadband access a top priority, and the announcement of this project continues to work toward our goal of closing the digital divide in our state."
"Our community deserves access to the tools that help our residents and businesses successfully participate in today’s economy," state Rep. Clay Pirkle said. "Thanks to Irwin EMC and Conexon Connect for making broadband a reality in this region."
"Offering fiber broadband to our members represents a huge turning point for our electric cooperative and our communities," Irwin EMC President/CEO Randy Crenshaw said. "Our members have been asking for high-speed internet for years, but we couldn’t bring the project together until now. It’s exciting to get started so that the rural communities we serve will no longer have the limitations they’ve experienced for years as the result of unreliable internet service."
The fiber-optic network will offer members access to symmetrical gigabit internet capabilities – among the fastest and most robust in the nation. Additionally, it will provide reliable, clear phone service, and enable the benefits of smart grid capabilities to the electrical infrastructure, including improved power outage response times, better load balancing, more efficient electricity delivery, and more.
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