Wilkin County Broadband Profile: current ranking 20

I am doing the annual look at broadband in each county – based on maps from the Office of Broadband Development and news gathered from the last year.

Wilkin County broadband ranking has remained steady at 20. There coverage for access to 25/3 and 100/20 is about the same. They are building for the future, they just need more expansion. (In eight years, they have gone from one of the worst to number 20 for 2026 goals.)

Good news is that through Advantenon, Wilkins County received state funding in the last round of grants.…

Advantenon, Rural Grant, Stevens and Wilkin Counties – $316,554. This project will serve 528 unserved households, 132 unserved businesses, and 8 unserved community anchor institutions in eligible areas across these three western Minnesota counties. In a funding partnership with the State of Minnesota, Advantenon will improve broadband service levels to 100 Mbps download and 100 Mbps upload, exceeding the state speed goal set for the year 2026. This project delivers the goal of Border to Border coverage for all residents of the covered counties, benefiting residents, businesses and public entities alike through enhanced access to healthcare services, education options, entertainment and business connectivity not previously possible. The total eligible project cost is $659,488, with a $342,934 local match.

Local provider Red River Communications is proud of their local coverage

The communities we serve in Richland County were awarded the status of “Smart Rural Communities” by NTCA – The Rural Broadband Association. Our entire fiber network earned Red River Communications the designation of being a “Gig Capable Certified Provider,” meaning every single one of our members on our fiber network in Richland and Wilkin counties can receive true gigabit Internet speeds.

This year, community leaders in Wilkin county have been vocal about their broadband needs:

In March, Minnesota Sen. Torrey Westrom, R-Elbow Lake, and Rep. Jeff Backer, R-Browns Valley, held a town hall meeting at Breckenridge City Hall where broadband was a hot topic.

In April Wilkin Commissioner testified in St Paul for rural broadband funding. County Commissioner Klindt said…

His aerial applicator company covers a three-state area where agriculture is king. “Frustrating,” is the polite word he would use to express his feelings about the internet service available to track weather and planes.

He used a wireless service for 10 years, but it was slow. “Dial-up was faster,” he said. It took several minutes to load a single map that takes seconds for anyone in most other areas of the state. “I just switched to satellite only to find the service drops when weather moves in — which is when I need it most!”

Info on Access:

Speeds % served 2017 % served 2018
25/3 80.84 86.53
100/20 80.84 82.08

The speeds reflect the Minnesota speed goals:

  • 25 Mbps down and 3 up by 2022
  • 100 Mbps down and 20 up by 2026

Current ranking for 100/20 access: 20

This entry was posted in County Profiles 2018 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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