City launches broadband internet survey

The City of Brownsville and seven strategic partners are encouraging Brownsville area residents to complete a broadband internet planning survey as part of an effort to improve internet service in the Brownsville, Rancho Viejo and Los Fresnos areas.

The survey is available at

Officials said the survey is part of a data-driven initiative that will help prioritize areas that need better internet connectivity with the greatest urgency.

Recently the city entered into a consortium with the Brownsville Public Utilities Board, Port of Brownsville, Texas Southmost College, University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, Greater Brownsville Incentives Cooperation, Brownsville Community Improvement Corporation, and Brownsville Independent School District, with the seven entities contributing funding to hire a consultant and bring faster and better internet access to Brownsville citizens.

The effort comes in response to an analysis of U.S. Census data by Business Insider that shows Brownsville ranks second in the nation for lack of broadband internet access, with an estimated 44 percent of households without a broadband subscription and more than 17 percent of households without a computer.

Participation in the survey will be available using a cell phone, tablet, or computer from any connected location. However, those who can complete the survey from their home or business address are strongly encouraged to do so. For those who can take the survey from home, there is an optional speed test component that will help planners map current accessibility across the community more accurately.

In the months ahead, citizen input gathered through the survey will be overlayed with infrastructure data to help planners identify the best paths, partners, and near-term opportunities that can be leveraged for additional infrastructure development. Citizens will have until the end of the calendar year to share their feedback but planning efforts will begin as soon as actionable patterns begin to emerge from the community response.