Citywide broadband access
Back To: Citizens Guide to St. Paul
Citywide Broadband Access
The city of St. Paul is currently studying the feasibility of a citywide WIFI network. Some of the players involved, include:
- Chamber of Commerce
- Communications Workers of America
- The Humphrey Institute of the University of Minnesota
- The Saint Paul Broadband Access Project
- Council members Lee Helgen and Dave Thune
Status of Project: On 07/28/2005, Lee Helgen posted to the St. Paul Issues Forum to report on the status of this initiative. Reported progress:
- "First, we have completed an initial selection and cost estimates for several pilot Wi-Fi Hotspots at city run facilities..."
- "Second, the City's Office of Technology is moving forward with a community needs assessment that will include public surveys, key participant interviews, and focus groups with key stakeholders."
- "Third, the City of Saint Paul is conducting an internal needs assessment to develop a better sense of our needs for broadband access through both fiber optics and Wi-Fi infrastructure."
Other Cities' Efforts
Opposition to Municipal WIFI
The cable and telephone industries are fighting municipally owned WIFI systems tooth and nail, including lobbying federal and state legislatures to pass laws prohibiting such systems. On the other hand, Senator McCain (R. Arizona) and Senator Lautenberg (D. New Jersey) have introduced legislation permitting municipally owned systems.