The City of Akron is planning to build a 62-square-mile wireless network that will anticipate future technology advancements. The city is starting with a Wi-Fi rollout and will have the capability of adding WiMAX and additional advancements in the future.
In an interview Wednesday, Rick Leu, chief technology officer for the city of Akron, said that, although the initial rollout is still viewed as a pilot, the overall plan is for the network to be upgradeable. "We don't want to get tied into Wi-Fi," he said.
MobilePro Corp. said that its NeoReach Wireless Division has been chosen to design, deploy and operate the metro-wide network. The firm said wireless access will be available for both fixed and mobile uses.
The plan, which still needs approval from the Akron City Council, calls for the multi-spectrum Wi-Fi /WiMAX mesh network to offer a range of free and fee-based services with data, voice and video capability.
Akron Mayor Don Plusuellic hailed the program, stating: "To be progressive and keep up with the demands of technology, we need to 'unwire' the city." With the advanced wireless network in place, city officials hope one advantage of its presence will be to help keep younger tech-savvy citizens from moving away from the city.