The 17 localities within the Hampton Roads region are working through the HRPDC to advance a regional broadband initiative. The goal of this effort is to leverage the transatlantic broadband cables that have connected to Virginia Beach as a regional economic development asset.
The first meeting of the Broadband Steering Committee was held April 18th. The Cities of Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk and Virginia Beach have each appointed a city manager and elected official to serve on this committee to provide oversight for Phase I of the Regional Broadband Initiative, which will include 30% design work for the Southside broadband ring. This ring will interconnect the transatlantic cables with employment, education and government centers throughout the Southside localities. This first Phase will also evaluate opportunities to connect across the Hampton Roads Bridge Tunnel and Monitor Merrimac Bridge Tunnel to the Peninsula. Future phases of this project will involve a similar effort on the Peninsula. The five Southside Cities have agreed to contribute $ 650,000 to complete the 30% design work for the Southside Fiber Ring.