Clearwater County: well covered thanks to Garden Valley Telephone Cooperative

clearwaterIn 2010, Clearwater County made the list of one of the nine worst served counties in Minnesota. Now they are number 4 county in the state with more than 99 percent coverage for speeds of 25/3 (Mbps down/up) and 73 percent coverage for speeds of 100/20. The local provider is Garden Valley Telephone Cooperative, they have made serious upgrades to their network. I know they have received federal funding but I don’t know that the upgrades funded were in Clearwater. Garden Valley has also received state funds, but not for Clearwater County.

Garden Valley is one of a few cooperatives in Minnesota that has been able to bring high speed broadband connectivity to their rural customers.

Clearwater County is in line to receive $58,269 in CAF 2 funding to upgrade 102 locations. Unfortunately CAF 2 recipients are only required to upgrade to 10/1 access. Many may choose to upgrade to better speeds but there are no requirements.


The Office of Broadband Development released data on broadband covered in fall of 2016, based on information gathered in July 2016. Here’s how Clearwater County ranked:

  • Percentage served with 25/3 or better: 99.58
  • Percentage served with 100/20 or better: 73.41


Mississippi State University Extension have come up with a ranking system to gauge the digital divide index (DDI) by county. (The lower the number the better – the state average is 40.66.) Here’s how Clearwater ranked:

DDI score of 47.01 out of 100.

More info:

I plan to profile each county in Minnesota – tracking broadband access, digital divide and annotated links to news of what’s happening with broadband in the county. I’m keeping it high level because there are 87 counties!

This entry was posted in County Profiles 2017, MN by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

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

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s