Measure would make Los Angeles the largest city with comprehensive municipal WiFi.
LOS ANGELES – Councilmember Bob Blumenfield today took the first step towards implementing free and universal WiFi access across Los Angeles. Blumenfield’s measure would begin the City’s process of developing a plan to close gaps in WiFi availably and will advance Los Angeles’s competitiveness in business and education.
“We live in a world where success is increasingly tied to ability access to information,” said Blumenfield, who chairs the Council’s Innovation, Technology and General Services Committee. “Los Angles has already made great strides towards enhancing government openness through technology, from live simulcasting of Council Meetings to the MyLA311 mobile application. Providing universal access to the internet is a natural and necessary extension of these efforts.”
When implemented, Los Angeles would become the largest city to implement a comprehensive municipal WiFi program. Cities such as Houston, Minneapolis, Riverside and San Jose have already launched successful WiFi initiatives.
Los Angeles currently provides free access to wireless internet at various locations throughout the city, including at Los Angeles’s Central Library and at all Los Angeles Public Library Branches. The measure, introduced today, would direct the City’s Information Technology Agency to report back to the Innovation, Technology and General Services Committee with recommendations on the development of a citywide municipal WiFi initiative.
“The benefits of wireless internet access across the city are numerous, from reducing start-up costs for new businesses to ensuring that every student is able to access essential tools for learning,” continued Blumenfield. “Finding new ways to bridge the digital divide by expanding our virtual infrastructure is crucial as we look to ensure our city’s continued competitiveness in a rapidly globalizing world,” he concluded.