News
News
7/20/2007
06:35 PM
Connect Directly
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Silicon Valley Cities Pause, Reflect On Muni Wi-Fi Commitments

The cities are studying whether to participate in an ambitious project to unwire several million people. The project has already encountered problems.

Officials from six cities and the Northern California county of Santa Clara have launched a major review and cost-benefit analysis to determine whether and to what extent they should participate in the massive, 44-city Wireless Silicon Valley project.

Wireless Silicon Valley would, at completion, be one of the largest municipal wireless networks in the world. It'll be built by Silicon Valley Metro Connect, a consortium comprising Cisco Systems, IBM, SeaKay, and Azulstar. It has already suffered delays: the project was originally scheduled to have at least two one-square-mile concept networks (in Palo Alto and San Carlos) up and running by now. But work hasn't started yet.

The cities reviewing participation are Palo Alto, Campbell, San Jose, Santa Clara, Mountain View, and Milpitas.

The Santa Clara communities are asking: "What are the needs, and how can we put a value to those needs on a city-by-city, department-by-department level?" said Craig Settles, a wireless networking consultant who's working with the cities to help carry out the analysis, in an interview.

Northrop Grumman is acting as the lead systems integrator for Santa Clara County on prospective wireless development, and Settles and Systems Definition Inc., an Alexandria, Va.-based technology consulting firm, have been hired to carry out the actual assessment. Since Santa Clara County represents several of the primary potential customers for the Wireless Silicon Valley network, the analysis project could affect the plans for the ambitious system stretching from Santa Cruz to South San Francisco

The Silicon Valley network will cost $100 million to $150 million to build and is expected to serve several million residents and businesspeople. The cities are not footing the bill to build the network, said Seth Fearey, the executive director of Smart Valley, an organization promoting public access to information technology in the Silicon Valley region. But they will be asked to commit to paying for a certain level of service once the system is in place.

Previous
1 of 2
Next
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
IT's Reputation: What the Data Says
IT's Reputation: What the Data Says
InformationWeek's IT Perception Survey seeks to quantify how IT thinks it's doing versus how the business really views IT's performance in delivering services - and, more important, powering innovation. Our results suggest IT leaders should worry less about whether they're getting enough resources and more about the relationships they have with business unit peers.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Government Oct. 20, 2014
Energy and weather agencies are busting long-held barriers to analyzing big data. Can the feds now get other government agencies into the movement?
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Archived InformationWeek Radio
A roundup of the top stories and trends on InformationWeek.com
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.