City of El Paso
The City of El Paso, Texas and the surrounding area faces significant challenges because of its poverty level, sparse geographic distribution, and limited access to tools necessary for economic development. Among those tools are computer access, broadband connectivity, and other advances in technology necessary to improve education, job training, and health. A 2009 Digital El Paso survey showed that only 35 percent of El Paso-area households have high-speed Internet access, compared to over 60 percent of households nationwide. The city’s Virtual Village project addresses these concerns through an extensive overhaul and expansion of its public computing capacity. The project will engage hundreds of agencies, community institutions, and local organizations to target vulnerable populations, particularly at-risk youth, the elderly, the unemployed, and minorities, with training in and access to computer technology.