MBC Boosts Capacity of Virginia Backbone

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The Mid-Atlantic Broadband Cooperative (MBC) has expanded the capacity of its network in southern Virginia, using money from the state’s settlement with tobacco companies to build a faster backbone to support more data centers. MBC is a not-for-profit cooperative created in 2003 to provide affordable broadband to Virginia residents.

MBC is using digital optical networking technology from Infinera (INFN) to boost the regional network’s capacity tenfold to 100 Gigabits/second (Gbps), ensuring that MBC can support the requirements of telecom carriers in new data centers in the region.

“Due to the recent growth of data centers and new companies locating in Southside Virginia, it was necessary for us to increase our capacity to provide on-net wholesale multi-gigabit connections from our mostly rural region to Tier I data center hubs like the Equinix facility in Ashburn, Virginia, Level 3 Gateways in Virginia and North Carolina and the Telx facility in Atlanta, Georgia,” said MBC General Manager Tad Deriso.


Among the data centers announced in southern Virginia is a Carpathia Hosting project in Halifax County that may eventually add 300,000 square feet of secure data center space. MBC said the region also has attracted a data center for an unidentified Fortune 100 company.

“Content providers, corporate data centers, and e-commerce companies looking for secure, affordable collocation space with unlimited bandwidth now have an exceptional resource in Southside Virginia,” Deriso said.

Infinera first announced its relationship with MBC in January 2007, and has since added additional capacity to the MBC network. “I’m thrilled to see the Infinera solution playing a role in helping MBC bring advanced services and economic growth to Southside Virginia,” said Infinera CEO Jagdeep Singh. “Infinera’s Bandwidth Virtualization, based on large-scale photonic integration, has enabled MBC to put in place a regional network that can flexibly and cost-effectively support the wholesale connectivity needs of carriers, business, local community, and government sector customers all on the same infrastructure.”

About the Author

Rich Miller is the founder and editor-in-chief of Data Center Knowledge, and has been reporting on the data center sector since 2000. He has tracked the growing impact of high-density computing on the power and cooling of data centers, and the resulting push for improved energy efficiency in these facilities.