People living in Red Oak rural areas are having hard time with high-speed internet access, the number of residents declines


RED OAK, Iowa –  — The urge to connect is stronger than ever, but according to the White House, more than 30 million Americans live in places without adequate broadband access.

Why is access to rural places so difficult?

In Red Oak, a lovely village of over 5,000 people, Mayor Shawnna Silvius realizes the potential for remote workers seeking a slower pace. Since 2017, she has been attempting to connect the city.

“Educating individuals on the various sorts of connectivity and why it is vital; when this was performed prior to COVID. COVID has brought people’s awareness to the importance of bandwidth capacity “Silvius added.

The community has access to broadband internet, but she has the following challenges: a large number of prospective people considering a relocation to Red Oak, as well as current inhabitants, want fiber internet supplied to their homes. The key is ensuring that the service is reasonably priced.

“And if we had that type of dedicated service, so they could work from home and perform any job from the country, I think it would really take off,” said Joey Norris, a business owner in Red Oak.

Joey Norris, a local business owner, estimates that it would cost between $10 million and $15 million to complete Red Oak’s connectivity. The Mayor reports that about 3,000 residences remain to be connected.

Silvius stated, “As of right now, I would estimate that it will take approximately three years to serve our entire neighborhood.”

A leader with a vision for the future must accept that brain drain will continue unless something changes.

“We are losing companies. The population of our community is decreasing. We must do this in order for people to regain this and progress “Silvius stated.

Additionally, the USDA stated that it will provide more than $500 million in loans and grants to bring high-speed internet to rural regions and companies in twenty states.

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