CHARLESTON, W.Va. – U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) and West Virginia Governor Jim Justice today joined representatives from Facebook for an announcement regarding Facebook’s plans to build a fiber optic cable that will run through parts of West Virginia. The project is expected to begin this year and will result in an approximate 275-mile route in West Virginia, providing the state with enhanced fiber optic connectivity. Senator Capito has worked for more than a year to make this project a reality, including discussing the issue directly with Facebook Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg during a Senate Commerce Committee hearing.
“Making sure West Virginia has reliable, high-speed internet has been a priority of mine since I was first elected to Congress,” Senator Capito said. “Today’s announcement with Facebook is an important step toward ensuring our state has the critical infrastructure to support broadband deployment, and I know it will help so many in our state, especially the rural communities that are unserved. I’m excited for what a fully connected West Virginia can offer the rest of the country, as well as what it can do for the future of our state. Today’s announcement brings us another step closer to achieving that goal.”
Facebook’s investment will significantly enhance fiber optic connectivity in West Virginia by establishing an approximate 275-mile route through the state. The construction, which is planned to begin this year and last for roughly 18 to 24 months, will begin in Ashburn, Virginia, and end in Columbus, Ohio, connecting two major internet exchanges. As a result of the project, broadband providers will be able to expand middle-mile networks into communities along the route, and it will establish West Virginia as a preferred route for fiber backbone construction.
In addition to efforts by Governor Justice and the West Virginia Broadband Enhancement Council, Senator Capito has long advocated for this partnership with Facebook and has advocated for similar investments.
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