Red Oak/623 Exchange Broadband Study
Montgomery County is served by several different telecommunications providers. Parts of the county have access to state-of-the-art fiber optic networks operated by Farmers Mutual Telephone Company of Stanton and other community-based communications companies. However the central and western part of the county in the 623 telephone exchange still does not have access to this game-changing technology and is limited to copper-based delivery networks.
The Montgomery County Development Corporation (MCDC) has created a 623 Committee to explore ways to bring fiber to currently unserved and underserved areas, including the City of Red Oak and the rural parts of the 623 exchange.
One possible way to accomplish this task (and make Montgomery County the first all-fiber county in Iowa!) is a public-private partnership between the City, County, and local providers.
Goals of the Broadband Study
Building out fiber to the rest of the county will require significant investment. Before embarking on additional steps, including a full network design, cost estimate, business plan, and development of partnership agreements, MCDC and the 623 Committee have hired SmartSource Consulting to conduct a Broadband Study of the targeted area.
The following steps will be taken during the Broadband Study:
Educate citizens in the study area about the importance of broadband service for education, health care service gaps, quality of life, business, agriculture, and the economy of the region.
Engage in discussions with individuals, anchor entities, and leadership groups to identify existing broadband gaps.
Conduct a comprehensive survey to measure attitudes about existing providers and gauge interest in and demand for a new, fiber-based provider.
Develop a strategy to achieve the goal of having 100% of Montgomery County homes and businesses be served by fiber optic networks.