SouthWest Minnesota Broadband Group Update

I wanted to provide a quick update on the progress of SouthWest Minnesota Broadband Group (SWMBG) and our Blandin Robust Network project. SWMBG is a group of eight communities looking to expand the reach of fiber-to-the-premise technology in portions of Jackson, Cottonwood and Nobles County. We have spent the last month gathering information from our communities, doing engineering and operational planning and last week we submitted a Stimulus loan application to RUS and NTIA. There has been strong support from the communities involved and we will be spending the next month completing the marketing survey for the area and completing our final feasibility document. Special thanks to Dan Olsen at Windomnet and Mitch Jasper at Jackson for their continued support. Also Round Lake and Lakefield have been very instrumental in the project. We at U-reka Broadband Ventures are proud of the determination of this group as we put the project together. We believe that multiple communities working together can eliminate some of the scalability concerns of rural networks. In this case Windomnet will provide backbone services to the project eliminating the start-up costs to the project. This project has truly been a partnership of cities, counties, education and private sector to bring real broadband to the area.

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