AT&T* announced today that it has completed its public-private fiber build in Vanderburgh County, Indiana, just over a year after launching the first customers on the new network. The $39 million project is now delivering AT&T Fiber to approximately 20,000 customer locations in unincorporated parts of the county, helping close the digital divide in the community.
As part of this effort, AT&T also announced a $50,000 contribution for the Evansville Vanderburgh School Corporation Foundation to further help close the digital divide through digital literacy training and the distribution of 400 free refurbished laptops for families and students.
“Evansville and Vanderburgh County are my home, so I can tell you first-hand how much this new connectivity means to the Hoosiers who live and work here,” said Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch, Indiana’s Secretary of Agriculture and Rural Development. “With fiber broadband like this now covering the community, our residents, business owners and farmers are able to get things done smarter and faster, and that equates to a big boost to our quality of life.”
This public-private collaboration is an example of AT&T’s work with local governments looking to expand broadband access. Vanderburgh County officials used federal funds made available by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2020 to bring fiber broadband to the area. Under the agreement, Vanderburgh County contributed $9.9 million in public funds to the project and AT&T covered the remaining $29.7 million. This is the first public-private broadband project that AT&T has completed from start to finish since federal funds were made available to states beginning in 2020.
The Vanderburgh County project is helping to address a crucial part of the digital divide by delivering fiber broadband to a largely rural area that is home to farms and agribusinesses. It’s estimated that nearly 25 percent of farmers in the U.S. don’t have access to internet, and an analysis of FCC data estimates that providing farmers with a reliable broadband connection could provide better crop yields and more profits for America’s farmers.1
“At Indiana Farm Bureau, we’ve supported initiatives that expand high-speed broadband in our rural communities,” said Indiana Farm Bureau President Randy Kron, who hosted AT&T’s announcement on his family farm. “Broadband is needed for every facet of modern life. Farm families and agricultural businesses are no exception. Now that our unincorporated areas have access to fiber connectivity, farmers will be able to implement precision technology and advanced analytics that can make our farmers more productive, efficient and sustainable. Children will have the ability to join virtual classrooms. Our neighbors will be able to access telemedicine. This is truly a game-changing advancement.”
“This was a large public-private project for our county, so I’m pleased that it was completed on time and on budget,” said Vanderburgh County Commissioner Cheryl Musgrave. “It was just 2 years ago that we signed our contract with AT&T. Fast forward to today, and we’re celebrating all of the positive things that high-speed broadband is bringing to our community.”
AT&T has extensive experience deploying fiber-optics across Indiana. In fact, more than 570,000 locations in the state have access to AT&T Fiber today. AT&T is also currently working with Lawrence County, the City of Boonville, the City of Martinsville and Delaware County on public-private collaborations to bring AT&T Fiber to those communities. In addition, AT&T is collaborating with the State of Indiana through the state’s Next Level Connections Broadband Grant Program to build fiber networks in parts of nine counties.
“AT&T has the expertise and resources to bring these kinds of large-scale fiber projects to fruition,” said AT&T Indiana President Bill Soards. “Add that to our in-depth knowledge of the Hoosier state, and you have a recipe for success.
“We’re so grateful to have had a collaborator like Vanderburgh County in this effort to help bridge the digital divide in Indiana,” Soards added.
AT&T Fiber, now delivering speeds of up to 5-Gigs1, is truly internet that upgrades everything. Offering consumers consistently fast speeds2 paired with network reliability, AT&T Fiber supports the powerfully interconnected home, work and family life. Our straightforward pricing eliminates annual contracts, data caps, equipment fees and price increases at 12 months. Plus, AT&T ActiveArmorSM 24/7 proactive internet security is included with all plans and helps block malicious threats from ever reaching your devices.3 AT&T All-Fi is also included for a powerful connection you can rely on, including our best Wi-Fi, unlimited data and an easy app.
AT&T is committed to connecting more Americans to reliable, high-speed broadband internet in several ways, including expanding and upgrading our network and participating in the federal Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP). The ACP provides eligible households with a benefit of up to $30 a month (up to $75 a month on qualifying Tribal lands4) to reduce the cost of broadband service and can be applied to AT&T Fiber, where available. Or use it toward Access from AT&T, offering speeds up to 100Mbps for $0 after the ACP benefit is applied. After confirming ACP eligibility, those who qualify can go to att.com/getacp, visit their local AT&T store or call us at 866-986-0963 to sign up for service. Have your ACP application ID handy.
About AT&T in Indiana
From 2020-2022, AT&T invested more than $1.1 billion in its wireless and wireline networks in Indiana to expand coverage and improve connectivity in more communities. That investment has increased reliability, coverage and overall performance for residents and businesses. It’s also improved critical communications services for Indiana’s first responders using the FirstNet network.