As part of its ongoing commitment to help connect low-income families to the internet so they can fully participate in educational opportunities and the digital economy, Comcast has announced plans to equip more than 25 different locations in the Twin Cities with WiFi-connected ‘Lift Zones’ before the end of 2020.
Working with its network of nonprofit partners, Comcast is providing robust WiFi hotspots in safe spaces designed to help students get online, participate in distance learning, and do their homework. This initiative provides free connectivity inside partner community centers for the next three years.
Twin Cities community organizations that have established Lift Zones in their respective facilities include:
- Boys & Girls Clubs of the Twin Cities locations
- Al Lenzmeier West Side, St. Paul
- East Side, St. Paul
- Jerry Gamble Center, Minneapolis
- Mount Airy, St. Paul
- Southside Village, Minneapolis
- DIVINE Institute, St. Paul
- Division of Indian Work, Minneapolis
- Hallie Q. Brown Community Center, St. Paul
- Hmong Cultural Center, St. Paul
- Keystone Community Services, St. Paul
- Neighborhood House, St. Paul
- North Star Network, Allina Commons, Minneapolis
- Perspectives Family Center, St. Louis Park
- Phyllis Wheatley Community Center, Minneapolis
- Pillsbury United Communities, Brian Coyle Center, Minneapolis
- Pillsbury United Communities, Pillsbury House, Minneapolis
- Pillsbury United Communities, Waite House, Minneapolis
- The Real Minneapolis, Allina Commons, Minneapolis
- The Sanneh Foundation, Conway Community Center, St. Paul
- Vietnamese Social Services, St. Paul
- YMCA of the North @ Archdale Apartments, Minneapolis
- YMCA of the North @ Briarhill Apartments, Eden Prairie
- YMCA of the North @ Maple Pond Homes, Maplewood
- YMCA of the North @ Montreal Courts, Little Canada
- YMCA of the North @ St. Barnabus Apartments, Minneapolis
Several more Twin Cities Lift Zone partners are currently under consideration, including Family Means and Little Earth Residents Association, with the goal to have all locations installed by early 2021.
In addition, the company is providing free access to all outdoor WiFi hotspots until the end of 2020, plus hundreds of hours of digital skills content to help families and site coordinators navigate online learning. Lift Zone sites complement Comcast’s Internet Essentials program, which has helped connect more than 8 million low-income people to the Internet at home, including more than 172,000 Minnesotans.