Pope County helps bring fiber to Villard

According to the Pope County Tribune

The Pope County Housing and Redevelopment Authority with Economic Development powers (HRA/EDA) approved a payment of up to $3,000 (5-to-1 vote) to bring a fiber optic line to the Massman Automation building in Villard.

Executive Director Dick Dreher said he has been working the past couple of months to find a way to bring broadband to Villard. Dreher said a problem was that the map the state of Minnesota has for grants shows that everything on the west side of Grove Avenue in Villard is served by broadband instead of unserved.

“Currently the speed is 10 megabytes per second download and one megabyte per second upload, which is absolutely inadequate to serve any businesses in this area,” Dreher said.

Dreher said the good news is that Verizon is going to put up a cell tower on Highway 28 near Villard and has selected Runestone Telecom out of Hoffman to provide the fiber optic line for the cell tower. Dreher said he did a lot of behind-the-scenes work to get Runestone to bring the fiber optic line down Grove Avenue so it will go right by Massman.

The fiber optics will provide 100 mbps up/100 mbps down which will greatly improve the service to Massman.

So much to notice here.

  • Interesting public-private partnership to have the county step in to help both financially but also in discussions about where to build
  • The declaration that 10 Mbps down and 1 up is “absolutely inadequate”
  • The glimpse at the role wireless can have a community infrastructure – because wireless needs middle mile to the backbone
This entry was posted in Community Networks, FTTH, Funding, MN by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

Librarian who follows rural broadband in MN and good uses of new technology (blandinonbroadband.org), hosts a radio show on MN music (mostlyminnesota.com), supports people experiencing homelessness in Minnesota (elimstrongtowershelters.org) and helps with social justice issues through Women’s March MN.

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