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Cook County’s broadband grant to help further expansion of CSFN


Cook County recently received a grant of $1.8M from the State of Illinois as part of the Connect Illinois broadband expansion initiative. This grant will help fund further expansion of the Chicago Southland Fiber Network (CSFN) throughout the south suburbs. The CSFN was founded by the South Suburban Mayors & Managers Association with the help of State of Illinois and Cook County. They have been providing services and fiber connectivity in the Chicago Southland region since 2014.

Currently, CSFN serves a variety of customers including Cook County courthouses, south suburban regional hospitals and clinics, municipal governments, public safety agencies, community colleges and universities, and economic development organizations. Over the past seven years, CSFN’s business model targeted anchor institutions within communities, supplementing later operations through fiber adoption in the business community. Business and municipal customers facilitated the ability of the CSFN to encourage community adoption at a far cheaper rate than commercial internet providers.

Cook County supports sustainable action to advance digital equity. The President’s Council on Digital Equity (CODE) is comprised of local members and senior advisors from around the U.S. who provide expertise and guidance as action is taken to address digital inequities. CODE’s counsel to President Preckwinkle has a special focus on the County’s south suburbs and other communities that have great need. CODE engages numerous, diverse groups to advance digital inclusivity and equity in the areas of: digital infrastructure, digital proficiency and digital well-being. Read more.

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