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Geospatial Advances to Close the Digital Divide

October 5, 2021 @ 11:00 am - 5:00 pm

Access to broadband is now a requirement to participate in modern society. The global pandemic exposed the challenges of poor access for unserved and underserved digital consumers. Significant funding from FCC, NTIA, and the CARES Act, coupled with an anticipated infrastructure bill, may provide government agencies the resources needed to fill these gaps. GIS can play a critical role in demonstrating “project readiness” for future grant applications related to expanding broadband access, providing affordability programs throughout a region, implementing connected smart city technology such as Internet of Things (IoT), and coordinating broadband infrastructure implementation projects.

The Michael Baker International team has gained substantial experience in broadband expansion with in-depth broadband planning, program management, and GIS experience for six statewide programs. This presentation will focus on the importance of accurate street address data to support the application of geospatial technologies to identify, validate, and define areas and structures (not just census blocks) that are unserved and underserved and determined to be available for funding. A case study will be provided on the Beaver County, PA – Office of Planning and Redevelopment project which focuses on the field survey of addressable structures, coordination with the public to define areas lacking high speed broadband services and identifying connectivity gap areas for future broadband expansion supporting digital inclusion for all residents in Beaver County.


October 5, 2021
11:00 am - 5:00 pm