Jorge Cardenas, director of Enterprise Applications for the City of Brownsville, was the speaker featured at the most recent Friday with the City event sponsored by the Brownsville Chamber of Commerce and the City of Brownsville.
The event was held at the Brownsville Events Center and Cardenas’ topic of discussion was Broadband BTX: Past, Present, and Future.
The City of Brownsville is currently working on the Broadband Middle Mile project that will provide internet connectivity to the community using a fiber optic network. The middle mile infrastructure will create a minimum broadband capacity of 100 megabits city-wide. Lit Communities is also assisting in the project.
The Brownsville City Commission in July 2021 decided to invest $19.5 million in American Rescue Plan Act funding to develop the 100-mile Middle Mile backbone network.
Brownsville had consistently been ranked as one the least connected cities in the United States and Cardenas said he remembered that during the pandemic school children were sitting at local eateries and bus stops trying to get internet connections, so they could do their school work.
The city in 2019, with other entities within the city conducted surveys to see what the needs of the residents were and if they had internet. Some residents said they did and some say they did not.
The first customers connecting with Lit Communities could get their connections set up as soon as September.