Travelers flying in and out of Cleveland Hopkins International Airport recently began using free wireless technology (WiFi) for Internet service, courtesy of Case Western Reserve University and OneCommunity.
Coverage includes several concourses, the ticketing/boarding level and the baggage claim area. Airport visitors used to pay for WiFi access.
"'Connect in CLE' is a small but important step in securing the brand and image of Northeast Ohio as a forward looking and progressive hub," Lev Gonick, vice president of information technology services at Case Western Reserve, said about the new service.
More than four years ago, Gonick wrote a blog entry on how he and the region's technology leaders envisioned Hopkins Airport as a true gateway to Cleveland, and how the city could re-invent itself as a Digital City. The recent announcement of the free wireless service at the airport is an opportunity to check off one of the plan's highly desired items.
Approximately 12 million travelers annually from all over the world who use wireless at CLE will be greeted with a splash page that welcomes them to free wireless services powered by OneCommunity in partnership with Case Western Reserve University," Gonick added.
The university provided the technical architecture for the network and plans to underwrite the effort. OneCommunity purchased the equipment. In addition, local public utility companies donated approximately 500 miles of inactive fiber optic rings in the area to support the cause.
Gonick and Case Western Reserve initiated the formal establishment of the nonprofit organization known as OneCleveland, the predecessor of OneCommunity. OneCommunity is a nonprofit organization that serves Northern Ohio by connecting public and nonprofit institutions to the next-generation fiber-optic network, enabling those institutions to offer enhanced, innovative solutions and transforming the region's image and economic future by attracting outside investment and creating business and job opportunities.
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