Earlier this year during her Sate of the City speech, Duluth Mayor Emily Larson addressed the critical broadband needs facing Duluth. At that time she pointed out the disparities that exist around equitable access for all Duluth residents to fast, reliable, and affordable internet.

At that time, Mayor Larson committed to allocating $1 million in American Rescue Plan funds to incentivize new service providers in the area in order to create competition within the market. Now, she and the City would like to hear from residents on the subject.

A new broadband community needs survey has been created and Duluth residents are encouraged to take a few minutes and complete it. The survey is designed to collect essential data from residents about how and why they use the internet and if it is affordable. It will also help gauge barriers residents may face in accessing reliable and affordable internet service.

"It's crucial to have as many people as possible take the survey," City of Duluth Economic Developer Emily Nygren said. "Whether you take the survey on your phone, at the library, a computer lab, at work or at home, we are looking to collect as much information as possible to help us understand how the public uses the internet, how this service could be better, and how it could be spread more equitably throughout Duluth."

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The survey is available now and will remain open to take until Friday, November 12. Once the survey closes, city staff and EntryPoint will review all the data collected and create the master broadband plan. You can click on the button below to take the survey now.

Ultimately, the plan that is created from this survey is expected to include:

  • A marketing and risk analysis that identifies current services, prices, and speeds from carriers in Duluth.
  • Infrastructure options for fiber, optic, coaxial cable, and wireless.
  • Potential sources for construction financing and long-term financing.
  • Recommendations and considerations for next steps.

The plan is expected to be presented to the Duluth City Council by the end of 2021.

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