Swain County Residents Have New Hotspot

Swain County residents can now find a new hotspot to connect to at the Swain County Recreational Park, thanks to a grant from the Southwestern Commission.

Leonard Winchester, a member of the Swain County Broadband Committee, says the addition of a hotspot at the Swain Rec Park is an ideal location. “It’s conveniently located, everybody knows where it is, and it has great parking.” Winchester says both parents and students feel safe at the park. “The area is well lit and policed. I expect it to be heavily used both by new users and possibly by others who would prefer to use this location.”

The Swain County award was one of six projects the Southwestern Commission funded within its service area, which includes the seven far-westernmost counties in North Carolina. The state of North Carolina awarded almost $190,000 to the Commission to distribute, intending to better help students connect to broadband. 

“The pandemic showed us how critical broadband access is for our students,” says Russ Harris, Executive Director of the Southwestern Commission. “Every student needs access to their home and Swain County is making significant progress towards this goal; but, in the meantime, this project provides a space for students to be able to get that access to internet services.”

For more information about the Southwestern Commission, visit www.regiona.org.