Winona County Broadband Profile 2022: Yellow rating: Ranking out 30 of 87

Rank: 30
Code: Yellow
(See Blandin Foundation interactive map)

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

Winona County ranks 30 for broadband access and 20 for digital equity out of 87 counties. They have hovered from 85-87 percent coverage to broadband of 100 Mbps down and 20 up since 2018. There is a slight dip in access this year but it is within a margin of error and may simply reflect a more granular look at access. They have 3123 households without access to broadband at that speed. Estimates indicate that it will cost $29 million to get to ubiquitous broadband in the county.

County Housing Unit Density Number of Housing Units 100/20 Mbps houses unserved Cost to close the gap
Winona 33.8 21,716 85.62 3123  $       29,041,675.44

Winona County will benefit from a border to border grant announced in December 2022:

  • Ace Telephone Association, Inc., $3,218,201.00

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.

In 2022, HBC announced 10 Gig residential service in the City of Winona. Two months later they announced expansion in rural parts of the county.

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.

Winona County has work to do but recent events and awards help them retain their yellow code.

Broadband Access:

  2022 2021 2020 2019 2018 2017
100/20 (2026 goal) 85.62 87.59 87.47 86.43 86.31 81.17
25/3 (2022 goal) 88.88 91.65 88.09 86.58 86.48 92.13

Digital Equity:

Winona County ranks 20 out of 87 for digital equity. (See full Digital Equity Profile)

Winona County ranks 17 out of 87 for computer ownership. 94 percent of homes have a computer of device as compared to statewide ownership of 95.5 percent.

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
  • 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.


  • Find more articles on broadband in Winona County (
  • 100/20 Mbps ranking: 30 (down 2)
  • Has worked with Blandin: yes
  • Has received a MN Broadband grant: yes
  • Household density: 33.8

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 Profiles 2022, 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.

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