Qwest simply doesn't have the money to aggressively roll out FTTN on a widespread basis.
2007 CAPEX for Qwest was $1.67B.
That last one should tell you a lot: Qwest and Charter are spending about the same amount on capital expenditures, while Qwest has obligations to cover a lot more territory that is harder to service than Charter does. Telcos have to spend a lot of money servicing all that copper in rural areas, and Qwest's territory is very sparsely populated and geographically interesting. MSOs, by contrast, tend to stick to cities.
This is why Verizon is trying to drop Maine and New Hampshire, btw. They'd rather concentrate on areas with denser population (and more money) like Boston, New York City, etc.
Unfortunately, we won't be seeing a lot of advanced new services popping up in Qwest's footprint (and seeing how I live in Denver, that hurts me too).
Seattle recognizes that Qwest is unlikely to roll out the kind of service they'd like to see, and the MSOs, knowing that Qwest is weak, will only invest just enough to keep ahead of Qwest. The result is that Seattle (and Denver and Phoenix) don't get the same kind of attention that cities like Boston and New York are getting, so they're trying to get the ball rolling in another way.