CUPPAD is currently working with partners on broadband connectivity initiatives for the central U.P. Access to highspeed internet is essential for today’s workforce, schools, and the local economy.
As the COVID-19 pandemic has shown us, internet access is not equitable, especially for places like the rural Upper Peninsula. Residents who lack access to broadband or cannot afford a home internet connection are unable to participate in telehealth, virtual learning, telework, civic engagement and many other activities that those who are connected are able to use every single day. Addressing the broadband divide has never been more important.
This webinar was held on March 25th, 2021 and its purpose was to inform residents and stakeholders in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan of the recent Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF) and how planned projects will bring high-speed connectivity to rural areas. We were joined by Tom Stephenson from Connect Michigan and James Salter from the Atlantic Engineering Group (AEG). The presentation is followed by a question and answer session.
The Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF) was awarded through the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and aims to bring high speed internet connections to rural areas. The majority of Upper Peninsula areas were won by the Atlantic Engineering Group, who plans to install fiber lines before 2024, increasing internet speeds and connectivity to underserved areas.