In an exciting development for advancing rural broadband access in Washington State, Lewis County Public Utility District (Lewis PUD) has officially become a member of NoaNet Affiliate Member Program. NoaNet has been at the forefront of efforts to improve broadband access across Washington State, and its Affiliate Membership Program has opened the doors for public benefit agencies like Lewis PUD to contribute to this critical mission actively.
Lewis PUD, with its dedication to serving the needs of its community, found a natural synergy with the goals and values of NoaNet for the expansion of broadband infrastructure within its service territory. Lewis PUD provides electric service to substantially all of Lewis County (with the exception of the City of Centralia) and the southwest portion of Pierce County. The PUD serves about 32,500 electric customers. Additionally, the PUD operates approximately 88 miles of dark fiber and is in the process of constructing Fiber To The Premise (FTTP) infrastructure as a publically-owned open access network within it’s service territory.
Empowering Rural Communities
The affiliation with NoaNet empowers Lewis PUD to continue its commitment to rural communities in the Lewis County region. As we enter an era where connectivity is not just a convenience but a necessity, this collaboration will allow Lewis PUD enhanced access to NoaNet staff and resources to expand its broadband services and provide customers more reliable, high-speed internet.
Rural communities often face unique challenges when it comes to broadband access. Remote locations, challenging terrain, and limited resources can make it difficult for these areas to keep pace with urban centers in terms of connectivity. By joining forces with NoaNet, Lewis PUD gains access to a wealth of resources and expertise, enabling it to overcome these challenges effectively.
A Shared Vision
At the heart of this partnership is a shared vision for a digitally inclusive future. Both Lewis PUD and NoaNet are committed to ensuring that all communities, regardless of their geographical location, have access to the essential services and opportunities that reliable broadband internet provides.
By pooling their resources and expertise, Lewis PUD and NoaNet are working together to address the digital divide that has persisted for too long in rural Washington. They aim to uplift communities, create educational opportunities, and foster economic development in these regions through enhanced connectivity.
One of the key benefits of Lewis PUD’s membership in NoaNet’s Affiliate Program is streamlined access to NoaNet’s extensive network infrastructure and staff. NoaNet has invested years in developing a robust middle-mile network throughout Washington State. This infrastructure forms the backbone of reliable broadband connectivity in the region. This not only benefits Lewis County residents but also contributes to the broader mission of connecting rural communities statewide.
Lewis PUD’s decision to join NoaNet’s Affiliate Membership Program is a significant milestone in the journey toward comprehensive broadband access in Washington State. It demonstrates the power of collaboration between public benefit agencies, each driven by a shared commitment to improving the lives of their communities.
As this partnership continues to evolve, it holds the promise of a brighter and more connected future for rural Washington. By working together, Lewis PUD and NoaNet are making strides in leveling the playing field and ensuring that every community has the opportunity to thrive in the digital age.