Upjohn Author ORCID Identifier


Publication Date



The Merit Network, in support of a U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) grant application, asked the Regional and Economic Planning Services Team at the W. E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research (Upjohn) to estimate the economic impact of building and maintaining more than 70 miles of broadband infrastructure in the eastern Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

The region for estimating economic impacts is referred to as the eastern Upper Peninsula (EUP) and the region includes Luce, Chippewa, and Mackinac counties. The estimates for constructing the broadband infrastructure are reported for the period 2021 to 2023 and include labor as well as hard and soft costs.

While the study contains estimated impacts to the study region as well as to the rest of the state of Michigan and the rest of the United States, it focuses only on the construction and maintenance of the broadband and not the benefits of the “last mile” to firms operating such systems, or to businesses or residents using such systems.

The study finds that the combined impact for all regions – the EUP, the rest of Michigan, and the rest of the United States – for the 2021 to 2023 period is slightly more than $18 million in increased output or sales. The estimated impact in value added (or gross domestic product) for all regions is $10.4 million, and the estimated impact in personal income for all regions is $4.9 million.

Issue Date

January 25, 2021


Upjohn project #35171


The Merit Network

Subject Areas

ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT; Transportation and infrastructure




Robey, Jim. 2021. "Construction of Broadband in the Eastern Upper Peninsula of Michigan: Estimates of Economic Impacts." Prepared for Charlotte Bewersdorff, The Merit Network.