Redwood County ranks 83 (out of 87) for broadband speeds of 100/20: code red

Redwood Falls County is not poised the to meet the state broadband goals for 2022 or 2026. They might be able to get some ideas back from a feasibility study they did in 2013 – work with partners and find funding.

Percentage of Served Population by Speed and Date
Redwood 2019 2018 2017
100/20 (2026 goal) 33.56 33.56 34.37
25/3 (2022 goal) 70.94 72.07 41.80

Green=served Purple=underesrved Red=unserved

The data seems skewed because after 2017, broadband provider Nuvera provided more granular DSL data. They corrected the speeds.

Redwood County has benefited from MN broadband grants:

  • 2017 – MVTC (Minnesota Valley Telephone Company, Inc.) – Milroy Broadband Project – GRANT $742,365
    Serving 246 unserved households and 22 unserved businesses in the Milroy Broadband Project located in both Redwood and Lyon Counties with service levels to 1 Gbps.
  • 2016 – ARVIG – REDWOOD COUNTY TELEPHONE MIDDLE MILE FIBER EXTENSION – GRANT: $27,998
    Serving 5 unserved households and 20 unserved businesses near Morgan, MN, in an area southeast of Redwood Falls with service levels to 25 Mbps down and 3 Mbps up.
  • 2015 – MVTV Wireless Middle Mile
    Grant award: $808,080
    This project is a Middle Mile broadband infrastructure buildout to upgrade backhaul capacity between site locations within 20 southwestern Minnesota counties: Blue Earth, Chippewa, Cottonwood, Jackson, Kandiyohi, Lac Qui Parle, Lincoln, Lyon, Meeker, Murray, Nicollet, Nobles, Pipestone, Rock, Redwood, Renville, Sibley Swift, Watonwan, and Yellow Medicine.

Redwood County was a Blandin Broadband Community  in 2013; they released a feasibility study. While the study is somewhat dated now, one observation remains true

While residents in Redwood Falls have access to multiple broadband providers, the residents in the smaller communities and rural areas have less access to broadband services.

And some of their next steps for action remain apt..

1) A first step should include contacting RUS to discuss the project and available RUS loans and grants. [Might contact MN Office of Broadband Development and ask about Broadband Grants now.]

2) After that, meetings should be scheduled with each potential service provider partner to share the report and discuss cooperative efforts toward entering into a long term agreement.

3) Engaging the League of Minnesota Cities or other organizations that may be useful in determining the best path to choose in organizing Redwood County legally to enter into agreements with RUS and partners.

4) Engaging, local, state, and national politicians and their staff’s may be helpful in gaining support for any non-traditional track to implementing broadband in Redwood County.

Redwood County could benefit from future grants. In 2019, Minnesota Valley Tel. Co. (MVTC) applied to upgrade service in Redwood. (That doesn’t mean they will get the grant; they have only applied.)

Checklist:

  • 100/20 ranking: 83
  • 25/3 ranking: 75
  • Has worked with Blandin: yes
  • Has received a MN Broadband grant: yes
  • Household density: 7.5
  • Number of providers: 10

Details:

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. I’m looking at progress toward the 2022 (25 Mbps down and 3 Mbps up) and 2026 (100 Mbps down and 20 Mbps up) and will code each:

  • Red (yikes)
  • Yellow (warning)
  • Green (good shape)
This entry was posted in County Profile 2019, Red by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

I have a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science. I have been interested or involved in providing access to information through the Internet since 1994, when I worked for Minnesota’s first Internet service provider. I am pleased to be a part of the Blandin on Broadband Team. I also work with MN Coalition on Government Information, Minnesota Rural Partners, and the American Society for Information Science and Technology.

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