Sug­ges­tion taken

Sum­mer­side council con­sid­er­ing free Wi-Fi for Heather Moyse Drive

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - THE ISLAND - BY COLIN MACLEAN

The City of Sum­mer­side is will­ing to move ahead with a pro­posal to make free Wi-Fi widely avail­able along the wa­ter­front.

Council agreed dur­ing its Tues­day com­mit­tee meet­ing to add the project to a list for fund­ing con­sid­er­a­tion dur­ing the 2018 bud­get de­lib­er­a­tions.

The idea was orig­i­nally one of three youth-fo­cused sug­ges­tions made by Sum­mer­side In­ter­me­di­ate School stu­dents par­tic­i­pat­ing in the Ju­nior Mayor and Council pro­gram.

Fol­low­ing the sug­ges­tion, council asked staff to gather more in­for­ma­tion on the idea, which they pre­sented at Tues­day’s meet­ing. Ac­cord­ing to Ja­son Mut­tart, the city’s IT su­per­vi­sor, it would cost about $30,000 to in­stall eight new Wi-Fi hotspots along Heather Moyse Drive, plus an ad­di­tional $1,500 per year in li­cens­ing fees.

This would in­volve us­ing the same kind of tech­nol­ogy the city has been us­ing for nearly 10 years at its cur­rent free Wi-Fi hot spots, in­clud­ing the dog park on Sea­weed Road, Green’s Shore, Credit Union Place, city hall and the Le­furgey Cul­tural Cen­tre.

Mut­tart said the num­bers he used would de­pend on a cou­ple of fac­tors, such as whether the equip­ment can be pow­ered us­ing ex­ist­ing power polls (Sum­mer­side Elec­tric is check­ing on that) and whether the hotspots prove pop­u­lar and the city needs more band­width.

He also said staff sug­gested Heather Moyse Drive as op­posed to Wa­ter Street, which had been brought up, be­cause the buried in­fra­struc­ture on the lat­ter would make the project much more ex­pen­sive.

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