February 14, 2023 -- Toronto -- Today, Ecopia AI (Ecopia) announces the company was selected by the State of Arizona and Dewberry to provide a comprehensive, accurate, and up-to-date map of all buildings throughout the state. The map is currently being used to secure federal funding for rural broadband expansion from the BEAD Program, which allocates funds to underserved communities lacking access to broadband internet services.
Like many other states, the State of Arizona aims to provide more equitable access to broadband by applying for BEAD Program funding from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). To do so, states must submit challenges to the FCC’s existing database of broadband serviceable locations (BSLs), which in many cases does not represent an up-to-date view of communities. Ecopia has partnered with several states, including Alaska, to provide foundational data for BEAD funding applications.
Arizona is the sixth largest US state, with an area of 113,900 square miles. It is home to over 7.2 million residents, making it the 14th-most populous. The state is also extremely diverse, containing many urban, suburban, rural, and tribal areas. This adds complexity to not only broadband expansion, but also to curating a reliable dataset for determining BSLs.
By teaming up with Ecopia, Dewberry and the State of Arizona are able to leverage high-precision building footprints extracted from up-to-date geospatial imagery for the entire state. This comprehensive dataset represents all structures in Arizona, serving as a source of truth for identifying BSLs to submit to the FCC. Ecopia’s Building-Based Geocoding further helps Dewberry and the State determine BSLs missing from the FCC database, as it accurately depicts which structures are related to each address.