Cedar Rapids will be one of three cities to participate in the Capstone Challenge Series, a pilot program led by advocacy organization National League of Cities testing geographic information system (GIS) broadband tools. Esri is the program’s strategic partner, providing four GIS solutions to launch and test in Purcellville, Va.; Butte-Silver Bow, Mont. and Cedar Rapids.

Included are the equity index tool, designed to identify gaps in broadband coverage and priority populations, and the speed test app aimed at gathering more comprehensive data on internet coverage and speed by having consumers self-report their experiences.

Esri will solicit feedback from the three pilot cities about their broadband challenges and analyze the data collected in order to create “relevant and repeatable” GIS-based broadband solutions, a release said. The National League of Cities’ capstone program started in July and concludes in January 2022.