Broadband is Expanding in Franklin County
Friday July 19, 2019
Picture from Franklin County Broadband Expansion Announcement on 7/18/19
Broadband expansion continues throughout Virginia to meet Governor Ralph Northam’s challenge to make broadband internet service available to everyone, in every region of the Commonwealth.
On Thursday, July 18, 2019, Governor Northam joined a group of citizens and local officials gathered at Summit View Business Park to announce the latest broadband expansion in Franklin County, Virginia.
“You know Virginia is doing well. Our unemployment rate is very low right now. We’re bringing in a lot of capital investment, but we’ve got to do everything we can to lift up rural Virginia,” Northam said. “And the one thing I hear every day is we need universal broadband.”
This broadband expansion project, funded in part by a $650,000 grant from the Virginia Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission, will bring high-speed internet service to several communities within Franklin County. It will also bring the service to the Summit View Business Park.
Summit View Business Park is a 550-acre publicly owned industrial park located on Highway 220 in Franklin County. Franklin County is building the park to attract advanced manufacturing, data centers, business process centers, and other types of industries.
The park’s first two tenants will be local business expansions: ValleyStar Credit Union and Stik-Pak Solutions.
- ValleyStar is a credit union serving southwest and central Virginia and north central North Carolina with a full range of consumer and commercial products and services. In February 2018, ValleyStar announced it will invest $5.25 million to build an administrative services campus at Summit View. ValleyStar expects this new campus to create 10 new jobs, for a total of 32 positions based at this site.
- Stik-Pak Solutions is a packaging company that operates at Commerce Park in another area of Franklin County. In May 2018, Stik-Pak announced it will invest $14.3 million to relocate and expand into a new 100,000-square-foot facility at Summit View. Stik-Pak aniticipates this move will create up to 60 new jobs over 6 years.
In addition to infrastructure-ready industrial sites, Summit View will offer walking trails and a recreation facility for the benefit of employees working in the park and surrounding County residents. The County’s plan is to build out the park in phases over 30 years as new and expanding businesses choose to locate at the site. Fully occupied, the park is expected to attract $300 million in new tax base and over 2,000 jobs. (Source: Smith Mountain Eagle)
Leading the development of Summit View Industrial Park is Franklin County Director of Economic Development Michael Burnette. Burnette said, “We as economic developers in Southern Virginia work to make new businesses transition into our community as easy as possible.”