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Fiber Network Tackles High Unemployment in Danville, VA

  • Broadcast in Internet



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This story of broadband-driven economic development is inspiring. Around 2003, Danville, VA faced pretty bleak economic conditions, including huge unemployment. As tobacco farming died out in the state, towns were shrinking dramatically with the withering employment opportunities.

Danville’s public utility turned to broadband to help relieve the crisis. Starting by connecting municipal and utility buildings and the K-12 schools, Danville Utilities in 2006 began services to local businesses. Today the network passes 1000 business locations including five business parks, and it’s the cornerstone for improving the local workforce by helping K-12 students and adults become digitally literate.

Former Danville Mayor Linwood Wright joins us to discuss the various steps they took to implement changes and activities that improved the competitiveness of current businesses and drew new organizations into the area with new jobs. Among their successes is a transformation of local healthcare delivery that is a big draw for businesses re-locating.

Listen and learn.