Wadena County Broadband Profile 2021: Green rating: Ranking out 13 of 87

Rank: 13
Code: Green
(See Blandin Foundation interactive map)

Wadena County: close and still getting closer

Wadena County jumped from 49 percent access to 91 in 2019 and has been improving incrementally since then. They did a great in the last round and that might be the push they need to get to ubiquitous broadband.

Wadena County will benefit from a MN State Grant awarded in 2021:

West Central Telephone Association – Rural Staples Phase 2 – GRANT $465,050 This last mile project will serve 56 unserved locations in extremely rural areas of Wadena and Cass counties.

Projected allocation of American Recovery Project ARP funds in Wadena is $2,653,540; broadband is one possible use.

If the state grant doesn’t get the county to goal, they could try to encourage the community to invest in broadband with federal funding. That would help them reach ubiquitous broadband. They are a green code community.

Broadband Access:

2021 2020 2019 2018 2017
100/20 (2026 goal) 97.29 95.53 91.07 49.91 45.69
25/3 (2022 goal) 97.36 95.53 93.01 92.37 88.23

Computer Access:

County Households with computer …with desktop or laptop …with ONLY  smartphone …with a tablet et al
State of MN 93.6% 80.6% 7.7% 63.8%
Wadena 84 67.9 8.2 47.8

Past grants:

  • 2015 – West Central Telephone Association Hwy 71 Wadena NORTH Expansion Project – Grant Award: $193,515
  • WCTA (West Central Telephone Association) – Rural Staples Phase I Project – GRANT $555,355


  • Find more articles on broadband in Wadena County (http://tinyurl.com/z7xgkz8)
  • 100/20 Mbps ranking: 13 (same)
  • Has worked with Blandin
  • Has received a MN Broadband grant: yes
  • Household density: 9.82


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 MN, MN County Profiles 2021 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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