Project Grant


Grant Description
The applicant's underground fiber project (the Project) aims to facilitate high-speed broadband deployment to currently unserved or underserved areas, improve affordability in already-served markets, catalyze lower-priced broadband for economically vulnerable communities, bolster national security interests, and facilitate the provision of broadband service to anchor institutions. The $30.8 million Project, with the applicant providing a funding match, will be comprised of 69.9 route-miles of underground middle mile fiber communications infrastructure that will drive substantial end-user benefits and encourage new last-mile broadband providers to enter this market, including those offering low-priced internet access plans.

Activities to be Performed:
The Project will use fiber to build a new/resilient middle mile network through unserved and underserved communities with a commitment to open access and carrier-neutral non-discriminatory interconnect. The period of performance is expected to be 4 years.

Expected Outcomes:
The applicant's goals and deliverables for the Project are as follows:
1. Installation of 69.9 miles of new underground fiber optic cable.
2. Target affordable, high-speed, and high-capacity broadband service to unserved, underserved, economically disadvantaged communities, CAIs, and local and federal government facilities.
3. Expanded choice for residents and anchor institutions by offering open access middle mile interconnection with reduced barriers to entry for ISPs.
4. Improved service reliability by deploying 100% underground fiber in conduit with active monitoring.

Intended Beneficiaries:
Beneficiaries are in the communities of Laurel, North Laurel, Elkridge, Columbia, Bowie, Glen Burnie, Linthicum, and Brooklyn Park, as each have concentrations of unserved, underserved, and/or poverty-stricken areas and would benefit from more affordable, equitable internet access options. While the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) map suggests that several ISPs exist in the area, there are still over 8,500 unserved residents and only one provider that offers a low-income or affordable internet option. According to Census 2020 data, 65 of the census tracks along or adjacent to the Project have over 29,599 residents in total who are considered below the federal poverty line. Additionally, 43 schools along the route have more than 50% of their school populations receiving free or reduced-priced meals (Maryland Department of Education, 2021). Moreover, 87,376 residents across Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Howard, and Prince George's County live in a household receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI), cash public assistance income, or food stamps/SNAP in the past 12 months (American Community Survey 5-year estimates, 2021). Overall, the socioeconomic landscape demonstrates the level of need in the communities that will benefit from the Project. Also, the Project will enable and strengthen broadband service to 50 anchor institutions, including 20 schools, 2 libraries, 3 healthcare providers, 2 higher education institutions, 9 community centers, 1 police station, 1 fire station, and 12 other institutions. Finally, the Project brings value to national security interests in the form of communications redundancy and resiliency for Fort Meade and federal agencies located near the underground conduit and fiber.

Subrecipient Activities:
Place of Performance
Windsor Mill, Maryland 21244-2642 United States
Geographic Scope
Single Zip Code
Related Opportunity
Baltimore Gas And Electric Company was awarded Project Grant 2409MM521 worth $15,438,845 from the National Institute of Standards and Technology in July 2023. The grant has a duration of 4 years and was awarded through assistance program 11.033 Middle Mile (Broadband) Grant Program. $15,450,524 (50.0%) of this Project Grant was funded by non-federal sources.


Last Modified 6/21/23

Period of Performance
Start Date
End Date
6.0% Complete

Funding Split
Federal Obligation
Non-Federal Obligation
Total Obligated
50.0% Federal Funding
50.0% Non-Federal Funding

Activity Timeline

Additional Detail

SAI Number
Award ID URI
Awardee Classifications
For-Profit Organization (Other Than Small Business)
Awarding Office
Funding Office
Performance District
Benjamin Cardin
Chris Van Hollen
C. Ruppersberger
Modified: 6/21/23