Big River Launches Tower Bringing Broadband to Millersville
[04-15-2014] Furthering its mission to deliver affordable high-speed Internet service to underserved areas of Southeast Missouri, Big River Broadband will officially launch another tower in Cape Girardeau County on Monday, April 14th. The tower is located off highway B and highway BB in Millersville. In addition to providing high-speed Internet to Millersville, the new tower will also provide service to parts of Friedheim, Burfordsville and Oakridge.
The Big River Bus will be open for two weeks in the parking lot of the Millersville First Baptist Church located at 531 Market Street. Big River Customer Experience Representatives will be on hand to demonstrate the service and answer questions. Members of the community who would like to learn more about Big River Broadband and sign up for high-speed Internet service can visit the bus between the hours of 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. April 14, 16, 21, 23, 25 and from noon to 7 p.m. April 15, 17, 22 and 24. Those who cannot visit the bus are encouraged to come by Big River Broadband headquarters at 24 S. Minnesota Street in Cape Girardeau or call 1-855-BIG-RIVER (1-855-244-7483).
Big River is committed to building 58 towers in 7 counties of Southeast Missouri; this one is the 37th. In addition to Cape Girardeau County, the intended service areas include parts of Washington, St. Francois, Bollinger, Madison, Ste. Genevieve, and Perry counties.
Mike Howe, General Manager of Big River Broadband explains, “In some areas people have several choices for high-speed Internet service. But in the smaller communities, we frequently are the only affordable, reliable choice. We are very proud to be able to provide this service and to employ local people to serve their communities.”
UPDATE: Big River has officially completed 64% of the towers in our broadband build. Towers have been coming online over the entire 7 county area. Contact us today to find out if a tower is active in your area. Call 1-855-55-GO BIG or 1-855-BIG RIVER today!
New Tower Activated
[01-17-2013] Big River Broadband released another tower this week in the creation and expansion of their now ever-growing 4G LTE Broadband network. The latest tower, a Bollinger County location, is located a little east of the intersection of Hwy 51 and Hwy 72. The new tower was a complete land build, meaning it was not a tower Big River leased room to hang equipment on; rather it was built from the ground up after processing through all of the many pre-construction phases. It is now active and live to provide service to those within the area. Residents living in the Patton area and its surroundings spanning north towards County Road 248, south near State Hwy JJ, and east and west from near State Hwy EE to County Road 204 are encouraged to see what services Big River Broadband might have available to them. With internet starting as low $34.95 and speeds up to 10mbps, Big River Broadband offers a high quality service not previously available in the Bollinger County area. This is just tower number 32 of the initial 58 Big River Broadband is currently in the many phases of building in this first network skeleton. With more of the distant rural towers to follow this quarter and this year, service is expanding rapidly from the central region that has been developed. Call a Big River Sales executive at 855-55-GO-BIG to see if your home is within coverage.
Big River for the Holidays
[11-27-2012] Big River is continuing the BIG savings this holiday season? Big River is excited to offer BIG discounts to all that sign up for high-speed internet service this Holiday season from now until Dec. 31. You can call or visit any Big River office to get the deals this season on the best network that you need for the technology you love and deserve. Why not let River Broadband pay parts of your bill for you? With a chance to save some holiday cash, sign up for the best gift that keeps on giving. For more information, call 1-855-55-GO-BIG or visit us at either of our locations in Cape Girardeau or Farmington, Missouri. Give Big, Save Big!
Come see us
[10-12-2012] Big River Broadband is out and about across the seven county region each and every week bringing you high-speed internet on our 4G LTE network. With our Broadband Mobile Retail Store, we’re bringing the best of the internet experience to you, rather than making you always come to us. We are hosting sales events weekly throughout the counties at different locations to provide the complete retail and sales experience and we're adding more areas each day. You can expect to find a fully functioning miniature store upon your visit. High quality retail sales executives are at the BigBus to inform and provide you with the latest technologies so you can get Broadband internet at your home. Along with our Headquarters in Farmington, the Broadband Mobile Retail Store is an additional way to reach more customers in more places with more stores on their way. To find out where the BigBus is this week, visit www.bigriverbroadband.com/calendar.html and stop by to see us when we’re near you!
Service, Feedback and Employment
[09-21-2012] With the initial launch of the Phase One Towers in the beginning of August, Big River has continued to release more active towers and spread coverage across the area as they have become ready. Since the first 18 towers went live, 4 more towers have been released to the public with at least two more to follow by the end of this month.
Feedback has been much appreciated from all customers, positive and negative. We value the information our community has been giving us on the positives of our service and employees and the information on the areas in which we can improve both our processes and our networks. We are actively working around the clock to keep high quality strength of service with our brand new 4G LTE network for our customers. As more towers are released, stay tuned to our sites and call in at any time to check for coverage in your area. Click HERE for the current list and regions of coverage with Big River Broadband internet.
Along with providing high-speed internet to the region, Big River Broadband has also been increasing employment with multiple new hires to the Broadband team over the last few months. Everyone from installers and techs to the new General Manager, Big River Broadband has been going and growing. We would like to extend a welcome to the team to Trevor Sullivan, Chad Moss, Ryan Hawkins, Ashley Chrisco, Miranda Derrick, and our new General Manager Mike Howe. Applications are always accepted via mail to:
Big River Broadband
101 S. Jefferson Street
Farmington, MO 63640
Contacting us for service
[09-05-2012] We are activating new towers on a regular schedule. There are multiple ways to find out if services are available in your area. The first method is to check our tower map here. As we turn on new towers, we will be updating that map to reflect the latest online services. Secondly, you can always call 1-855-55-GO-BIG to speak with one of our representatives. You can also visit one of our offices to speak with a representative in person. You can visit us out our headquarters in Farmington at 101 S Jefferson, or at our Cape Girardeau branch at 24 S Minnesota. Lastly, you can also visit us at our Mobile Retail Store. To see where I Mobile Retail Store is located, you can visit our calendar here. If you are a business owner, and would like to host our Mobile Retail Store, please call us at 1-855-55-GO-BIG and let us know.
Services going live!
[08-07-2012] Big River Broadband is excited to announce that phase one towers for our Broadband Network deployment are now operational. You can see a map of all 18 of our active towers by clicking here.
This multi-phase process of tower releases will continue on until all 58 towers Big River is using to deploy the network are servicing the seven county regions of Bollinger, Cape, Madison, Perry, Ste. Genevieve, St. Francois, and Washington. This new network is the first to be built from a locally owned and operated telecommunications company, and was constructed in order to bridge the gap between the rural and urban internet service opportunities. Where there once was a complete lack of service in areas no other company was willing to serve, Big River Broadband will work to complete a 90% penetration of all households with the latest and greatest internet.
With bundled packages including their high quality telephone service, Big River Broadband is going live with highly competitive and enticing prices to suit all internet needs. Packages range from $29.95-$99.95 with current Limited Time Offers allowing for 3 months of unlimited data and $10.00 off monthly fee. This is to allow customers to gauge their need for data and speeds in a trial period without penalty for purchasing too much or too little. Pricing information can be found here.
“Big River Broadband is excited to start to deliver this BIG project to the region. Big River wants everyone to Go Big with the most advanced network available in the industry! Please stop by and see us when we set up in your community or stay in contact via our social media outlets,” said Kevin Cantwell, President or Big River.
You can read a local news article about the deployment here.
Big River Broadband Hosts “Media Event”
[07-26-2012] Big River Broadband is hosting a “Media Event” on Friday, July 27th in Terre du Lac, right underneath the water tower, from 11am to 1pm. At this event, media correspondents from the seven county region, that broadband will initially be servicing are invited to come out and see the process that has been made in the launch over the past week.
Media correspondents will be able to speak with the Broadband Team and learn about what Big River is offering. They will also be able to view and tour the Broadband Mobile Retail Bus. To find out how Big River is providing customers with their 4G(LTE) Broadband internet network, media representatives will be welcomed to witness a live Big River tech installation. Lunch will be provided for all members of the media.
The Broadband Mobile Retail Outlet, along with the Broadband Team, will be traveling across the seven county region hosting sales events in different locations. This will allow the service to come directly to the customer, and not make the customer come to the Broadband headquarters in Farmington. Big River plans on attending fairs and community events and visiting easy-to-access landmarks across the rural region, while still selling services out of the Farmington Headquarters.
Big River Broadband kicked off their first broadband launch Monday, July 16th, in Terre du Lac, with an amazing turnout. Over the past week people have been able to make appointments during the day with sales representatives and also walk up to the Broadband Mobile Bus and ask Broadband Sales Representatives questions on pricing and packages available. Many have even signed up for service right on the spot. The Broadband Team will continue to be in Terre du Lac through Monday, July 30th.
“We are excited to provide much-needed service to the underserved in Southeast Missouri. This week’s Broadband launch has been exciting for all of us, but more importantly it’s been exciting for the community. We look forward to showing the public how Big River Broadband is connecting the community to next generation communications.”, said Kevin Cantwell, President of Big River.
If you are a member of the media and would like to attend, please contact Lauren Dirnberger for additional to confirm your attendance. Lunch will be provided for members of the media. Lauren can be contacted at 1-573-388-3771.
Big River Broadband Goes Mobile
[06-27-2012] The Big River Broadband Mobile Sales Bus is almost completed, with minor graphic adjustments and inside sales installations being completed over the next week. With this vehicle, Big River Broadband will go where no other internet provider in Southeastern Missouri will go... TO YOU! Big River Broadband will be traveling across the 7 county region hosting sales events that allow the service to come to the customer, and not make the customer come all the way to our headquarters in Farmington. As a retail unit we will be conducting sales meetings by both appointments during the day and walk-in sales opportunities in the afternoon and evening. We plan to make a presence at every fair and community event, visit easy-to-access landmarks across the rural region, and sell out of the Farmington Headquarters so we can provide Broadband access with ease to all that we can. Big River Broadband, This Is Big!
[06-11-2012] As we work to hit our June goal of some tower launches and sales, we are excited to say we have 17 of our 54 tower sites currently in a testing phase and receiving feedback from testers around the area. These are scattered amongst Bollinger, Cape Girardeau, Madison, St. Francois, and Ste. Genevieve Counties with 4 more tower sites to be turned up and testing within the month (by July 1st) in Perry, Ste. Genevieve, and Washington Counties. Six sites are currently finishing up the construction phase and being prepared to begin the testing phase. All are located within Cape Girardeau, Perry, St. Francois, Ste. Genevieve, and Washington Counties. There are 3 more towers within Perry County beginning their construction this week and 5 towers in the final construction planning stage. These 5 are located in Madison, Bollinger, and St. Francois counties.
Eight more tower sites are completing their Environmental and Geotechnical Analysis, which means they are about to progress into the construction process which has become very streamlined and efficient as we’ve gone through the build-out process. These eight tower sites are located in Washington, St. Francois, Bollinger, and Ste. Genevieve counties. Four more towers have completed their microwave licensing in Cape Girardeau, Madison, and Washington counties as well.
This means 47 of our 54 towers are all quickly moving through the physical property phases, whether that is construction, analysis, or our most exciting phase of testing. The remaining 7 towers are expected to finish contracting, pre-build planning and plotting so work can begin soon. In less than one year from being allowed to start our construction process, we have towers almost completely ready to be released to the full public for sales, a goal we are excited to meet with plenty of time still left on the clock! Big River is so thankful for all of the support our customers and future customers have provided, with their kind words and encouragement as we work to bring the best of Broadband internet to the area. With the need high and demand mounting, we will not stop working to perfect our product as much as possible so when we release the services to the community we will be able to ensure our best quality of service. This project is for the great people of the region and we are thrilled to have been chosen to provide it.
Ahead of schedule and excited to please, Big River Broadband. This is Big!
Big River Broadband Expands
[06-08-2012] Big River Broadband would like to welcome two new employees to the technology side of the business. Christopher McCluskey and Zach Hardesty began work with the company in late Quarter 2 of 2012.
Christopher McCluskey, a recent University of Central Missouri graduate, has joined the Big River Broadband team as a Network Engineer for the Advanced Wireless Spectrum Big River Broadband is currently working to deploy. He received his BSBA in Computer Information Systems and is a positive new asset to the team working out of the Network Operations Center for the Broadband Headquarters. His knowledge regarding network infrastructure and his ability to produce high quality solutions to network problems have gained him much recognition, including winning two competitions: Kansas City Power and Light’s Database Design Winner and Kansas City Power and Light’s System Architecture Winner. We are more than excited to have him join the Broadband team.
Zach Hardesty, a recent Southeast Missouri State University graduate, has also joined the Big River Broadband team working as a Systems Administrator. He received his B.S. Industrial Technology: Telecommunications & Computer Networking and will be working out of the Broadband Headquarters. Zach has a broad knowledge of all things IT ranging from general computer repair to certifications in Cisco, CompTIA A+ and more. He comes with great recommendations from Southeast Missouri State and experience that makes him truly qualified for the job.
Big River Broadband is excited to see the company grow as we finish our last few weeks of testing before we go live in the area with our Broadband network. We have been interviewing a multitude of qualified candidates for positions across the board. We are excited to see the growth in the company coming as we add on employees one by one, increasing jobs and creating more local employment opportunities for the area. If you are interested in applying to be a part of the Big River Team, please visit www.bigriverbroadband.com and select the Employment Opportunities tab in the top corner. Send your resume and cover letter, along with the specific Job ID# to our Broadband Headquarters office. We look forward to growing and going as we work to deliver the Broadband network!
Interesting Tower in Potosi
[05-30-2012] The following tower was acquired by Big River Broadband in Potosi. What makes this tower unique is that it is of a different design than all of our other towers. Our towers being built are of the typical 'tripod' design. Those that we have collocated onto have either been of the tripod structure or the single mast design. This tower in Potosi will service a large area, while being a one-of-a-kind tower in our broadband arsenal.
Moving through the Phases
[05-14-2012] Big River Broadband has good news on the development of the Broadband build out! We are in the process of testing services right now with 10 tower sites that are in the final phases. Five of these sites are in Cape County, three are in St. Francois County, and two are in Ste. Geneveive County! We are currently doing some select testing and research on the network as we are checking service strength, quality, reliability, and making sure we can get every bit of upload and download possible. Towers are continuing to progress through the several installation and alignment processes as well. Six tower sites are working on their backhaul and radio installation at this time; four are in St. Francois County, one is in Madison County, and one is in Ste. Genevieve County. With these six in their installation process and finishing up, we have another four that are scheduled to immediately follow. They are located in Bollinger and Ste. Genevieve Counties.
Six more towers are in their construction phase and are progressing through it with this great weather we have been having. They are located in Washington County, Perry County, Ste. Genevieve, Cape and St. Francois Counties. We have eight towers in construction contract negotiations, with a majority in Bollinger County and Perry County. Two are in Madison and St. Francois Counties also. Eight more tower sites are completing environmental and geotechnical analysis and reporting, and they are located in Bollinger, Washington, Ste. Geneveive, and St. Francois Counties. Lastly, we currently have four tower sites obtaining their preliminary microwave analysis and are looking to move forward into the next phases. These are in Cape, Madison, and Washington County.
With the development of these towers moving towards more and more being tested and turned on, we have been able to expand with two new hires on the technical side of the broadband development. Another installer and a network operations specialist have joined the Big River Broadband team to help manage the system and run the installation and delivery of Broadband to our customers. We have begun the testing process with receivers across the area to try out the towers service and are daily collecting information on what is working well, what needs improvement, and how we can streamline and develop the sales process as we look forward to launching to the public as soon as possible! This is big and getting closer day by day! Stay up to date at www.bigriverbroadband.com, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter @BigRiverCares for all your Big River Broadband information!
Updates and Technical Details
[04-18-2012] More progression with the towers! Lots of work on the technical side has been going on, and we’re going to explain as much as we can for what that means at the end of these updates! For the Co-location tower sites, those we did not have to build from the ground up, AWS and Microwave radio equipment has been installed on 9 towers: five in Cape County, one in Ste. Genevieve County, three in St. Francois County. AWS equipment has been installed with the Microwave radio equipment scheduled for this week on an additional 3 towers: one in St. Francois County, one in Madison County, and one in Bollinger County. We are excited to say that with these progressions, we have now been starting to pass data back and forth from some of the towers to our core network, clearly the most important technology update as this means towers are now beginning to be improved and tested for quality, strength and signal.
On our New Build/Raw Land towers, four have had AWS and Microwave radio equipment installed and six more have the AWS installed with the Microwave installation scheduled for this week and next week. Once this is all installed and tested, we will begin to be able to send data back and forth from them to the core network, a rigorous process, but one that we hope will go smoothly as we get more experienced with the process and can streamline the release. Please remember this is an entirely new network and experience and we are going to deliver the best possible product to the customer, which takes time and finesse! Being ahead of schedule to this point has been a tremendous boost and we are excited to continue to roll this out!
For our next set of Raw Land Builds, we are finishing construction company tower build proposals, contracts, and negotiations, as they have all moved into the next phase after undergoing the extensive environmental and geotechnical testing and analysis. There are fourteen towers in this group that we plan to continue with construction as soon as possible. There are two in Cape County, four in Perry County, two in St. Francois County, one in Ste. Genevieve County, one in Washington County, three in Bollinger County, and one in Madison County. Eight more towers are undergoing and finishing their environmental and geotechnical testing and analysis. Three are in Bollinger County, two in St. Francois County, one in Ste. Genevieve County, and two in Washington County. We have a final four towers with a completed survey and are scheduled to undergo this testing across the region: one in Cape, one in Madison, and two in Washington.
A brief explanation of each of the technical processes is listed below. This is to give a better understanding of what goes into each installation of equipment and what some of the many testing requirements we have to follow.
AWS Installation- Advance Wireless Spectrum or simply AWS pertains to the frequency we use to deliver broadband service and the installation of this technology consists of mounting antennas, radios and cabling on our towers and then tying that back into our core voice and data network over microwave or fiber.
Microwave/Backhaul Installation- In order to deliver bandwidth to our tower sites we need to have a transmission medium. This medium will be either licensed microwave or terrestrial connections to the tower sites. In the case of microwave, our installation consists of many steps. We perform several studies to make sure the topology between any two points is suitable for a microwave link. Once we determine the length of the “shot” and the line of sight is available we will complete engineering and order towers to achieve the desired link parameters. Because we use licensed microwave frequencies we must coordinate with the FCC and be granted a license that specifies the frequencies we’re using, the height of the microwave antennas and the land coordinates for the towers onto which the gear will be placed.
Alignment Processes- Along with clear line-of-sight, aligning/pathing a link involves several other design considerations. We need to consider free space loss (how much signal weakens over a given distance), antenna gain (how much an antenna boosts the RF signal), transmit power (how much RF power is actually output) and several other design considerations. Again, all of the parameters that go into the design and alighment of the link will be submitted to the FCC and keep in their database.
Once the link is in place a substantial amount of integration and commissioning tests are run on the links.
Testing- Based upon results of testing at each of these different phases of installation, progressing through the process could take as little as a few weeks to a few months. We undergo call testing, bit rate testing, transmission and reception testing, with strength and quality maximized at each level, and more.
This is a very general and simplified description of the technology aspect of the tower buildouts, but we hope to assist in any clarification you might need in understanding the updates and process of delivering you the Big River Broadband 4G LTE Network!
Big River Broadband Event a Success
[04-11-2012] Monday and Tuesday, April 9th and 10th, proved to be two very BIG days in Big River Broadband’s build-out process of 4G LTE broadband internet. Our partner, Alcatel-Lucent, was in town at the new Broadband Headquarters Open House to deliver a truly unique and big experience to the public by demonstrating the power of 4G LTE technology in their mobile Executive Briefing Center. Hundreds showed up for the two day event to participate in sessions put on by the Alcatel Lucent and the Big River crew to gain information about what Big River Broadband is deploying to the 7 county region. With an address from Governor Jay Nixon to the crowd Monday night, entertainment, food and drink, these past few days have been great fun and excitement for the area. Downtown Farmington was host to a large group of visitors and a good time was had by all!
You can view pictures from the two-day event below:
News coverage and articles of the Governor's visit and Big River's efforts can be viewed below:
[04-04-2012] Next Monday, April 9th and Tuesday, April 10th, we will be hosting the Big River Broadband Experience in Farmington, to celebrate the opening of our new Farmington headquarters. This two day event will include demonstrations of the opportunities and possibilities our 4G LTE Broadband internet will provide the seven county region we’re building in.
People attending the event are going to be able to experience firsthand applications, such as: real scenarios, business to business applications, live cast, public safety demonstration and connected classroom, just to name a few.
Daily one-hour sessions ARE invitation only, but from 4:30 pm – 6:30 pm each evening there will be an open house with food and music that will be open to the public. On Monday, April 9th at 4:30 pm, Governor Jay Nixon and his staff will be in attendance.
If you are interested in going to the Big River Broadband Experience, and would like to reserve a seat, please contact Dana Hukel at BOLD Marketing at 573-803-0676 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Seating is limited and filling up fast. So please don’t wait until last minute!
Status of Tower Construction Sites
[03-28-2012] We have lots of updates on the construction of towers across the seven county region. For the first group of 10 raw land construction towers, we have moved into completing most equipment cabinet installations and construction. All of them are completely constructed and erect. One has complete radio connectivity and microwave dishes have been installed, and this one is in Ste. Genevieve. Five sites have radio cabinets installed and connected to the Remote Radio Head with microwave connection in process this week, three of these are in Ste. Genevieve and two in St. Francois. The other four sites have the Remote Radio Head connectivity and microwave installation scheduled for these next two weeks. Two of these are in St. Francois, one is in Perry, and one is in Ste. Genevieve. These are the updates for the first raw land or “new build” as we also call them, towers.
For the first round of our Co-located towers, one site is with cabinet and Remote Radio Head connectivity, microwave installation and alignment and completely integrated with testing, and that is in Cape Girardeau. Three sites have this integrated testing going on starting this week, and they are also in Cape Girardeau. One site in Ste. Genevieve is just as far and has its integrated testing scheduled for next week. There are three towers in St. Francois County that are about to be ready to schedule the testing with the system, these dates are being scheduled for within the upcoming month. Equipment installation is being scheduled this week for one tower in Madison and one tower in Bollinger counties.
Current construction bidding is occurring on five towers, two in Cape, one in Perry, one in St. Francois, and one in Ste. Genevieve. Once this is complete, we can move them into the construction phase.
We are waiting on the government to approve eight towers we have submitted to them. Once we get RUS Environmental approval, we will start the contract bidding and construction. Three of these are in Perry County, three are in Bollinger County, one is in Madison County, and one is in St. Francois County. We are anxiously awaiting their approval to get these towers underway!
We have eight towers finishing the engineering phase which includes completed environmental analysis and geotechnical boring, which requires taking a thorough sample of the land to be tested for quality ground surveying and takes three weeks to undergo testing. This process is underway at three tower sites in Bollinger County, two tower sites in St. Francois, one in Ste. Genevieve, and two in Washington County. We are scheduling site surveys on four towers for the next few weeks, one in Cape, one in Madison, and two in Washington county.
Though the process is arduous and it feels like it has been an eternity since the project was began, we are actually only EIGHT months into the projected TWENTY month project. This means, that within 40% of the time frame we have to complete this project, we have already begun and progressed rapidly through miles of paperwork and research, submissions and approvals, ground breakings and now onto tower completions. We know the frustration and demand for the product as we work daily to answer questions, make decisions, and progress towards our final goal of providing high quality broadband internet to those never adequately served before. Your patience and support are greatly appreciated as we continue to bring jobs to the area and take this part of southeastern Missouri into the modern era of internet!
[03-13-2012] Here are the latest updates on the Broadband build-out tower construction process: Of the eleven co-location towers, nine have radio cabinets now set that will have testing starting next week. After this testing is completed, microwave installation will follow within the next two to three weeks. One is in Bollinger, five in Cape County, three in St. Francois County, one in Madison County, and one in Ste. Genevieve County. For ten of the New Build towers, eight are erected with the radio cabinets set at the sites, testing will begin next week and microwave installation over the next two to three weeks. This includes five in Ste. Genevieve, three in St. Francois, one partially erected in St. Francois and one ready to be erected in Perry County.
Here is a bit of a breakdown on what phase some of the remaining towers are in: Construction negotiation is currently taking place on six towers, two in Cape County, one in St. Francois, one in Ste. Genevieve, one in Perry, and one in Washington. There are 8 towers awaiting final environmental approval; three in Perry, three in Bollinger, one in St. Francois, and one in Madison County. Towers undergoing the environmental and geotechnical testing include eight, with locations across Washington, Bollinger, St. Francois, and Ste. Genevieve, and four more towers have scheduled site surveys within Washington, Cape, and Madison Counties.
As with any new project, especially one as large as this Broadband initiative, there is a speed curve that develops once you’ve smoothed out the steps necessary to take as you move along. The more times you repeat the process, the faster it goes and the amount of time a tower takes to go from beginning to end gets faster because the process is more regular. As our beginning towers are finishing and getting ready to be deployed, we are able to pick up speed (as much as we can) in moving along with towers earlier on in the process because we know what to expect and do. This is one of the first of its kind in its development, and coming from a small CLEC, we hope that all appreciate and understand the work going in to bringing the best of services possible to the currently underserved. This is BIG, for us and you, and Big River Broadband won’t stop until it’s complete!
Construction Upgrades Continue
[02-23-2012] This week we have 5 equipment cabinets being installed at collocation towers; meaning we are installing the electronics to connect AWS antennas with our core network. Four of these towers are within Cape County and one is within Ste. Genevieve County. The remaining five cabinets for our 5 other co-location towers will be installed over the next two weeks. This includes one site in Bollinger County, one in Madison County, and three in St. Francois County. After this, the Microwave installation will follow for all ten collocated towers.
For ten of our raw-land construction towers, equipment cabinets are set to be installed on 6 of the towers. One is in Ste. Genevieve County, two are in St. Francois County, and 3 are in Ste. Genevieve County. Four of the towers in construction are currently with foundation and in the process of being erected. These include one in both Perry and Ste. Genevieve County and two in St. Francois County.
Six other new towers that are ready for construction are spread across the region with 2 in Cape, 1 in Perry, 1 in St. Francois, 1 in Ste. Genevieve, and 1 in Washington County. 8 towers are waiting for final Environmental approval, the final step before construction. There are 3 towers in Bollinger County, 1 in Madison County, 3 in Perry County, and 1 in St. Francois County.
In total, 13 towers are in the first three phases, including finalizing tower height, beginning environmental and geotechnical testing, and site surveys. Four are in Bollinger County, 2 are in St. Francois County, 1 is in Ste. Genevieve County, 4 are in Washington County, and 1 is in Madison County. These progress quickly though the phases once contracts and walk-throughs are completed. We are taking no days off in this process and are actively working to provide you with the best in high speed Broadband Internet!
THIS IS BIG Video Contest!
[01-09-2012] Big River Broadband is excited to announce a Video Contest where you can win $2,500! Big River is hosting a "THIS IS BIG" Video Competition in which we want you to show us what "THIS IS BIG" means to you! In a 1 minute or less video, show us how you think "THIS IS BIG" and upload it to your website to enter to win $2500! This contest begins on January 15th and goes through March 30th. Visit our website at www.bigriverbroadband.com/contest for complete rules. The contestant with the most votes will win!
New Year Updates
[01-06-2012] Great news for the progression of the tower construction within the region! Construction improvement has been made to the towers and we’re looking to be right on schedule. For the eleven co-location towers that are under construction - tower antennas and cabling have been hung; the pads for equipment, ground ring and power have all been installed. The next steps for these towers in our move towards completion and going live are to set the cabinets and install the microwave dishes. These sites are across the area, one within Bollinger County, five in Cape Girardeau, one in Madison, one in Ste. Genevieve and three in St. Francois County.
For our New Build towers that are currently under construction, we have 8 around the region actively being processed. Four of these sites are in Ste. Genevieve County in which the towers are erected, with antennas hung on two of them and the other two beginning to stack the towers. For these four, the next steps include installing power, cabinets, and microwave dishes. The three sites in St. Francois County are also underway. One of the towers is erect and is ready to have power, cabinets, and microwave dishes installed while the other two are undergoing foundation preparation, site clearing and ground excavation. The tower site in Perry County that is currently under construction is working on access and foundation preparation, including finalizing access from the roads to the site with the city and beginning excavation and foundation pouring.
The next round of sixteen sites that are in the engineering stages are also spread across the region. Three of the sites in Bollinger County are finalizing tower and compound drawings. The two sites in Cape, two sites in Ste. Genevieve, and two sites in Washington Counties are also finalizing tower and compound drawings. One site in Madison County, four sites in Perry and three sites in St. Francois are finalizing geotechnical reports and tower and compound drawings.
Lastly, pre-engineering site surveys and analysis are occurring on ten more areas within the region and are distributed as such: Bollinger - 3 sites, Cape Girardeau - 1 site, Ste. Genevieve - 1 site, St. Francois - 3 sites, and Washington - 2 sites.
Big River Broadband’s corporate offices are also nearing completion. You can view pictures of the progress below:
For more direct notifications and information to be sent to you as soon as a tower in your region is at Go-Live status, sign up under our Notify Me section on www.bigriverbroadband.com and follow us on Twitter or our Facebook pages!
[12-06-2011] Big River Broadband is moving fast. Below you will see equipment coming in for our Tower build-outs. The equipment is currently being staged in our new Big River Broadband warehouse. This Is Big.
Tower Construction Begins
[11-28-2011] Big River Broadband has begun converting previously existing towers to be operational with our Broadband network at many co-locations. 6 sites throughout Cape Girardeau and St. Francois County are in the installment of equipment and conduits phase now, and are planning to be operational following thorough site testing. Conversion of four additional sites, one in each county of Bollinger, Cape Girardeau, Madison, and Ste. Genevieve are set to begin the week of December 5. The time for Conversion to being fully operational on these sites is faster than on sites we are building from the ground up. These Co-Location towers are already constructed and don’t require as much as initial builds do. Once a tower is completed, tested and functional, we will turn it on immediately to provide access to whoever is within the access area and will not wait to turn them all on at the very end!
For our New Build towers, that is those that will be constructed from the ground up, we are currently working on the excavation and foundation installation on four sites within Ste. Genevieve County and two sites in St. Francois County. The expected completion is hoping to be around the beginning of the year! Construction on a site within Perry County and two more sites within St. Francois County are to be started the week of December 12 and completed a little after the beginning of the New Year.
More sites are moving their way through the engineering and planning processes and nearing the construction phase. These include three sites in Bollinger, two sites in Cape Girardeau, one site in Madison, four sites in Perry County, two sites in St. Francois County, one site in Ste. Genevieve and three sites in Washington County.
Pre-engineering site surveys and analysis are also underway at three sites in Bollinger, one in Cape, one in St. Francois, and three in Washington. Those are expected to progress quickly and join in on the planning process as well!
This totals 19 towers in the construction processes right now, with 16 more rapidly approaching ground breaking and 8 being processed as we go forward! This is a staggering 43 of the projected 58 towers in process within the first 5 months of the creation of Big River Broadband! This is BIG! Keep up with more updates on our website, at our Twitter page @BigRiverCares and on our Facebook page facebook.com/bigrivertelephone! “Like us” and follow us for all the instant updates!
Successful HotSpot Launches
[11-23-2011] Big River Broadband has launched 7 HotSpots to date, which provide free internet service throughout southeast Missouri. You can see pictures below from all of our live HotSpot events.
Big River Renovates Firehouse
[10-25-2011] The renovation of the old firehouse in Farmington is moving quickly. The building will be the new home of Big River Broadband. We are excited about the construction and look forward to the day when we can move in and hire even more people. The pictures below show progress being made. We look forward to permanently moving into the building. As construction continues, we will post more pictures.
Big River Acquires Firehouse
[09-20-2011] Big River Broadband has finalized the paperwork to acquire the old firehouse in Farmington, MO. This will be the new base of operations for Big River Broadband. Big River will now begin the renovations necessary to convert the firehouse into usable office space and we look forward to serving the community.
[08-04-2011] Here are pictures of the warehouse in Farmington, MO, where Big River Broadband has signed a lease to store equipment for the network build-out.
Technicians in the Area
Technicians are in the seven county area doing boring work at each of the tower sites. We've posted a few pictures here:
Video of Tower Extension at Big River Telephone
Photos not enough? Here's some video we captured of the Big River Telephone tower being extended for wireless broadband functionality. Look at the skyline and you might just see it!
Why Wireless Broadband?
The purpose of Big River's Broadband Project is to bring affordable broadband service to an underserved area located in southeast Missouri. Today, the seven counties in Big River's service territory suffer from a lack of access to affordable networks. Despite the fact that some of the targeted area has existing providers of Broadband (DSL, cable and wireless services), the limited accessibility, relatively high-price and sub-par condition of those services has caused the take rates of broadband to remain low.
Each of the current providers of broadband service in the region are national players and are, in most cases, offering national prices. Thus, consumers in the targeted service area pay the same amount as consumers in other parts of the country despite the fact that the median U.S. household income is 28% higher than the median income levels in the seven-county area.
The lack of broadband access has several implications to the overall health of the targeted communities. These include:
Economic development is stymied because existing businesses and new businesses are at a disadvantage because high-speed access to the Internet is not readily available at reasonable prices. Attracting new businesses and growing existing ones is becoming increasingly difficult.
Education opportunities for students in the region are limited compared to the rest of the nation as they lack access to the increasing number of instructional tools and information requiring a broadband network connection. In Big River's work with local school district officials, those officials conducted informal surveys that show that only 32% of area students in K-12 have a broadband connection at home.
The administration of health care is less robust and more costly due to the limited access to affordable high-speed data connections to communicate diagnostic information, patient data and other health care information. This leads to a lower quality of care and higher costs, while doctors see fewer patients and have less tools to use to administer the best procedures.
Big River's project is intended to address these issues by:
Creating a broadband network that will reach 90% of the homes in the seven-county area. Accessibility to broadband will be increasing significantly.
Providing an affordable alternative for high-speed Internet. Big River will offer an entry-level 5 Mbps service that we will sell to households with students, seniors or low-income earners for a discounted rate with bundled telephone services.
Lending support to the school districts in the region by providing less expensive access to high-speed Internet while counseling district staff on tools available on the Internet to enhance classroom instruction. Big River will also facilitate the collaboration between districts and has allocated staff to support these initiatives. Discussions have already begun with area school district officials.
Increasing the options for high-speed connections to existing hospitals and medical clinics while introducing high-speed connectivity to patients' homes. Broadband connectivity to the patient will enhance monitoring and diagnostics to improve health care and diminish the costs associated with unnecessary procedures. Big River has existing relationships with many of the hospitals, clinics and doctor's offices in the region.
Improving economic development opportunities through broadband offerings. Big River has worked with various chambers of commerce, community leaders, the state economic development agency for the region, Southeast Missouri Regional Planning and Economic Development and other community organizations, such as Wired, which is focused on enhancing the IT infrastructure in the area. All of these groups are actively supporting Big River's Build-out for the impact it will have on the community's ability to attract businesses and create jobs.
Big River Broadband has identified those locations that will be home to the broadband tower installations that will deliver Wireless Broadband Internet Service to the seven-county area. Those locations are identified on the map to the right.
Big River Broadband is currently working to identify locations for Solution Centers that will be the premier technology educational resources for the area. Consumers will learn how to improve their lives and create new opportunities for themselves using technology. Specialists in each store will be trained as experts in several technologies. They will assist with:
Broadband services, telephone, mobile and cellular devices
Business and residential networking
Computer set-up and support
Productivity software installation and training
Digital Device education
Technology application training for local businesses
Web design support
Technology education for schools, community centers and libraries
Consumer education on the use of internet tools such as web searching, social media, geographic/mapping apps and online privacy practices.
Big River Broadband is also currently identifying staffing needs for the projects associated with the Broadband deployment. Be sure to check the Employment section regularly for opportunities in your area. Big River is also finalizing the plans for a new flagship location in Farmington, MO. A rendering of the new location can be seen below.