Winona County Broadband Profile 2021: Yellow rating: Ranking out 28 of 87

Rank: 28
Code: Yellow
(See Blandin Foundation interactive map)

Winona County: pretty good access and needs a push for ubiquitous

Winona County has been focused on broadband for years; they were part of the Minnesota Intelligent Rural Communities (MIRC) starting in 2010, a Blandin-led and federal (ARRA) funded broadband adoption project.

They have benefited from past grant funded projects and will benefit from a project that received MN Border to Border funding in the last round and have opted to use CARES funding to invest in broadband.

Winona County has allotted $1 million in CARES funding to pay for rural broadband expansion projects. Dakota County has earmarked $800,000 for its broadband expansion projects.

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

  • AcenTek – Rural Peterson Exchange FTTH – GRANT $1,492,096 This last mile project will serve 214 unserved households, 18 unserved businesses, 88 unserved farms, and two unserved community anchor institutions as well as 47 underserved households and five underserved businesses in areas of Fillmore and Winona counties.

Projected allocation of American Recovery Project ARP funds in Winona is $9,791,061; broadband is one possible use.

Winona County has the opportunity to invest in broadband with federal funding. That would help them reach ubiquitous broadband. They are a yellow code community.

Broadband Access:

2021 2020 2019 2018 2017
100/20 (2026 goal) 87.59 87.47 86.43 86.31 81.17
25/3 (2022 goal) 91.65 88.09 86.58 86.48 92.13

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%
Winona 90.3 81 4.4 59.3

Past grants:

  • 2015 – Hiawatha Broadband Communications – Winona County Whitewater Area – Grant Award: $247,000
  • 2015 – Winona County Hiawatha Broadband Communications – Cedar Valley Area – Grant award: $314,450
  • 2019: AcenTek – Rural Houston Exchange FTTH – GRANT $2,895,318


  • Find more articles on broadband in Winona County (
  • 100/20 Mbps ranking: 28 (down 4)
  • Has worked with Blandin: yes
  • Has received a MN Broadband grant: yes
  • Household density: 31.36


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 (, hosts a radio show on MN music (, supports people experiencing homelessness in Minnesota ( and helps with social justice issues through Women’s March MN.

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