Getting connected in the down: Free, high-speed Wi-Fi network set to launched in the city’s business district
Please see article in the June 5, 2014 Suburbanite entitled: “Getting connected in the downtown: Free, high-speed Wi-Fi network set to launch today in the city’s business district”.
I am pleased to announce that the Englewood Economic Development Corportation (EEDC) will offer free high-speed Wi-Fi in the downtown area. This will offer internet access to shoppers and residents for their convenience.
Mayor Frank Huttle III
ENGLEWOOD – The Englewood Economic Development Corporation (EEDC) will offer free, high-speed Wi-Fi in the downtown to provide convenient Internet access for shoppers and residents.
“We know that Internet access is part of everyday life and wanted to accommodate that as a service,” said EEDC Chairman Adam Brown. “This is part of an overall plan to make Englewood more hospitable.”
Brown said that last week they beta tested the network, which is planned to officially go live today.
During the testing, Brown said approximately 1,000 logged on to the network.
“Clearly once we start promoting it, it’s going to take off like wildfire,” Brown said.
Brown said the project, which cost less than $75,000, was a fraction of what the project should have cost. Officials were able to take advantage of unused fiber networks that already existed in the downtown, said Brown. Ackrion, a Massachusetts-based company that provides “large-scale outdoor Wi-Fi solutions,” implemented and designed the system.
An EEDC-owned fiber optic network, previously used by the former Bennett Studios, was connected to a fiber optic network owned by Englewood Hospital and Medical Center, said Brown. The hospital increased its bandwidth as its contribution to the project, said Brown.
“We were very pleased to have been invited to participate in this important initiative, as it is broadly consistent with advancing our mission to improve the health of our patients and community through education, information, technology innovation and excellence in care,” said Ronald Fuschillo, chief information officer at Englewood Hospital and Medical Center.
A number of buildings in the downtown, including bergenPAC, NVE Bank, and TreeCo, provided their roofs to act as access points to spread the Wi-Fi.
“I think it’s great for Bergen Performing Arts Center’s patrons to be able to come into Englewood, hang-out, get dinner before a show and have access to free Wi-Fi,” said Dominic Roncace, the performing art center’s chief executive officer, in a statement. “It’s an added amenity for everyone from all parts of the state when visiting Englewood can remain connected.”
Free Wi-Fi access will run along Palisade Avenue from Veteran’s Monument at the intersection of Tenafly Road up to Engle Street, including the Englewood Public Library. Shoppers can also access the Internet with along North Van Brunt Street from city hall to bergenPAC’s Performing Arts School.
Englewood Public Library was included within the free Wi-Fi zone after Brown saw a large number of residents using the facility during Hurricane Sandy two years ago.
When shoppers log on to the Internet, their browser will direct them to downtownenglewood.com, a homepage that displays a map of Wi-Fi access points and provides links to bergenPAC, Englewood Public Library, Englewood Hospital and Medical Center and EEDC’s Facebook page.
Brown said the free Wi-Fi in the downtown was “phase one” of a long-term plan to bring Internet access from Englewood Hospital to Route 4. The EEDC also has plans to expand parking capacity and place signs directing visitors to underutilize parking areas, such as the South Dean Street Parking Garage as a way of making Englewood “more hospitable.”
Phase two will expand the service to other areas of the downtown that are considered underserved, said Brown. The second phase may also look to provide high-speed Internet on a paying basis to businesses in the industrial area.
- See more at: http://www.northjersey.com/community-news/getting-connected-in-the-downtown-1.1029239#sthash.wVSmX06k.dpuf