During the municipal WiFi boom (2006 to be exact), the city of Maywood, Calif., (population 30,000) decided to deploy WiFi in its downtown district to encourage businesses to invest in the area.
"They wanted to be progressive," explained Eric DaVersa, vice president of business development at wireless network deployment company NetLogix. The firm worked with hardware supplier Motorola to roll out the Maywood WiFi network.
This year, the city decided to expand its WiFi effort by almost quadrupling the number of its WiFi radios. The goal? To cover the city with WiFi and provide Internet access to residents for free. Sound familiar?
"This is one of only a handful of networks that is free and citywide," said NetLogix's DaVersa.
To be fair, though, the network isn't exactly sprawling: The city increased its WiFi radios from 10 to 37, thereby covering a total of 1.5 square miles. Nonetheless, the effort is clearly a signal that muni WiFi remains an option for some locales.
DaVersa said Maywood is offering the network for free to residents and also is using it for a wireless video surveillance system for laptop-equipped police cars. The city pays NetLogix a maintenance fee for the network, though DaVersa declined to provide financial specifics of the deal.
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