Latah County is 98% rural by geography and 32% rural by population, which makes reaching the 12,660 residents who live outside the City of Moscow exceptionally difficult.
Because the fiber corridor runs along the western-most edge of the County on the Washington side of the state line, which is closest to the University of Idaho, Washington State University, and the City of Moscow — each well-populated areas with relatively flat, clear paths for telecommunications infrastructure. Whereas the rest of the County consists of 1,070 square miles of expansive, topographically diverse terrain with schools, cities, and households spread out all across it.
What’s more: To the north, east, and south of rural Latah County is largely unpopulated timbered acreage, which provides no alternate route for connection — essentially cutting off rural residents from broadband infrastructure and services.
Roughly 20% of households in rural Latah County have no internet access at all and the rest have service at levels less than 10 megabits per second download speed and 3 megabits per second upload speed, according to new NTIA maps. By new broadband standards, areas with less than 100/20 Mbps service are considered underserved and those with less than 25/3 Mbps service are considered unserved.
This means rural Latah County is UNSERVED.