Pitkin County’s Broadband Initiative stirs debate about the use of cell phones in Wilderness areas
Pitkin County’s ambitious Broadband Initiative, which is still in its early stages, does not inherently bring with it additional cell phone coverage. The new and refurbished infrastructure that will form the backbone of the Broadband Initiative will have the capability of being utilized by cellular service providers, but that will have to take the form of a separate set of business arrangements made between the county government and the various providers that serve the Roaring Fork Valley. It is entirely possible that some areas that will eventually be served by the Broadband Initiative will not by extension receive cell phone service.
Should cell phone service eventually piggyback with the Broadband Initiative infrastructure, there is no doubt that coverage will extend into the legally designated Wilderness areas that ring the Roaring Fork Valley. Whatever increased cell phone coverage might stray into local Wilderness areas is not by design part of the plan, but, rather, a symptom of the physical reality that cell phone waves don’t recognize Wilderness boundaries.
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