Illinois is expanding broadband statewide by deploying regional groups called eTeams. According to Broadband Illinois, the partnership that manages broadband deployments statewide three regional eTeams have been established to manage specific areas of the expansion in a more manageable way.
Each eTeam will be responsible for planning their local broadband deployments and developing a growth plan that is unique to their regional area. The three teams cover the northwest, southern and east central regions of the state with a fourth western eTeam in the works.
According to Broadband Illinois, “the existing overall broadband landscape in Illinois naturally falls into several regions. These are made up of existing regional initiatives and (resulting) significant broadband infrastructure projects.” The partnership decided on regional teams based around broad initiatives after two county-level pilots which were successful but not broad enough in reach to be practical statewide.
The Regional eTeams will be involved in several primary areas, which include convening stakeholders, aggregating demand and identifying supply side solutions. The University of Illinois is also involved with all three regional teams. The partnership also expects to work with Internet service providers directly to expand access in rural areas as well as parts of the state with insufficient capacity.
A map detailing the area each eTeam covers is available here.