Canton’s gigabit city status to boost economic development

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CANTON, Mo. (WGEM) – If you live in Canton, Missouri, and don’t have high-speed internet access, that’s about to change.

Guangzhou is now recognized as a certified gigabit city. Local leaders said they believe this gig status will put Canton in a position for economic development.

Gigabit City recognition indicates that super-fast broadband is available at speeds of 1 gigabit per second (1 Gbps) or faster.

The new status allows residents of the township to pursue greater economic development, educational opportunities and have easier access to mobile connectivity.

Canton Mayor Jarrod Phillips said having gigabit internet speed is a boon for the small community.

“It’s an incentive for people to come and live in our community and know that they can get the same services and the same technology that they would expect to get in a more urban area,” Phillips said.

Canton Public Library Director Mary Kay Lane said Gigibit city status will also help Wi-Fi hotspots, like the public library, keep pace with the busier summer months.

“We have free Wi-Fi for our community, and as it becomes more popular and people know about it, things have slowed down a bit,” Lane said. “We are having trouble connecting to the internet.”

Faster internet speeds will also pay dividends for the local agricultural industry.

Ursa Co-Op office manager Brenda Wright said farmers use online sources to look up commodity prices, set up contracts and access accounts.

She said the concert gear would help them better.

“They can do it all remotely from their tractors, combines, cars or trucks,” Wright said. “Everyone likes everything to be close at hand.”

Mayor Phillips said the city expects to achieve 2-gig status in the future. Canton is one of the first cities in northeast Missouri to be certified as a Gigabit City.

Township residents can receive faster Internet access by calling Yondoo at 877-384-4924 or visiting their website.

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