California city leverages federal fiber grant for launch of free municipal Wi-Fi

The city of San Leandro, Calif., is debuting a new municipal Wi-Fi network that will be free to users.

The network reportedly cost about $68,000 to deploy and was part of a $2.1 million federal grant that the city received in 2012. The grant was part of a public-private partnership that also called for the development of an 11-mile fiber route into the city's business district.

The fiber network currently serves a number of businesses in San Leandro and there is a plan to extend it to a total of 18 miles. The city's key role in the partnership is to provide the conduit, while Lit San Leandro, the company's partner in the endeavor, runs the fiber in the conduits.

The new Wi-Fi network only has six access points initially but the city plans to expand the network. In an interview with FierceInstaller, San Leandro Assistant IT Manager Michael Hamer said that "the goal is to expand to other parts of the city," including community centers.

Ruckus Wireless provided the Wi-Fi solution, which the company says is capable of 1 gigabyte speeds. SmartWave Technologies is the system integrator that performed the installation.

For more:
- see this release about the launch of the Wi-Fi network
- see this release from 2013 about the fiber deployment

Related articles:
Municipal broadband contenders: San Leandro, Calif.
Google's Sidewalk Labs and municipal Wi-Fi: This time, it could be different
Muni Wi-Fi 2.0: This time, cities are getting smarter