One of the five University of Iowa, School of Urban and Regional Planning field problems groups achieved a second place finish at the 2016 American Planning Association (APA) National Conference poster contest. The 2016 APA National Conference, held in Phoenix, Arizona, involved 4,300 planners from across the nation sharing best practices and upcoming trends. The poster, titled “Fiber-Optic Broadband Planning: Rural Reboot”, tied with two other posters from Georgia Institute of Technology and Arizona State University. The poster contest consisted of a popular vote by APA members who visited the posters. Overall, there were over 80 posters submitted to the conference from various universities and colleges in the U.S. and Canada.
The fiber-optic broadband project is a collaborative project between School of Urban and Regional Planning master's students, the Iowa Initiative for Sustainable Communities, and the Decorah MetroNet. The project involves working with the Decorah MetroNet partnership to increase broadband access through network and organizational expansion. The final project will be presented in May 2016, including recommendations and an implementation strategies for broadband expansion.
The students working on the MetroNet project include (pictured left to right) Qilu Chen, Dea Qatipi, Juliana Lucchesi and Jeff Gepper. Their poster can be viewed on the APA website.