The Virgin Islands Next Generation Network (VINGN), a project wholly owned by the Virgin Islands Public Finance Authority, has awarded a series of contracts to local firms to begin the process of rolling out the Virgin Islands’ broadband infrastructure, the Caribbean Journal reports, citing a statement from governor John de Jongh. The VINGN’s board of directors has authorised USD13.4 million in construction contracts for trenching that will allow for the implementation of high speed fibre-optic cable infrastructure across the territory. The development follows the approval of a USD700,000 contract last week for new facility access points along the network, taking the budget beyond the USD14 million mark.
Governor de Jongh commented: ‘These awards and the soon-to-be-released solicitations [for construction work and the purchase of building materials] signify new milestones in the development of the territory’s broadband network. This project, made possible by a public-private partnership, is now in full swing, and high speed internet service is even closer to becoming a reality for the territory’s residents, government and businesses’.
The VINGN is primarily funded by a grant from the National Telecommunications Information Administration (NTIA), as part of an extensive federal programme designed to improve broadband capacity in the US, its unincorporated territories and the District of Columbia.