I am glad to see private enterprise to setup and run this. There will be a free plan and allow the provider to upsell. This way it is not government funded.
“An update on Wireless Oakland: More than 300 people packed the Oakland County Board of Commissioners auditorium Monday for a summit meeting on Wireless Oakland, the county’s ambitious effort to create free wireless Web access throughout the county’s 910 square miles. GLITR met with Oakland County officials Tuesday, and CIO Phillip R. Bertolini said the system will be built and run by private enterprise. The county’s contributions? More than 2,400 radio towers, stop lights, tornado siren towers, etc., which are already wired with power, and which private enterprise can use to place wireless Web transmitters. The idea, Bertolini said, is to have the private sector provide a limited amount of broadband access free, then be able to upsell higher speeds and other services to users. (Ads on an access login page are another possible source of revenue.) A formal request for proposals to build the system will go out in April, Bertolini said, with the goal of having a demonstration project up by September and five model communities in service by the end of the year. Future goals include free or extremely low-cost computers and technology training for all county residents.” – Great Lakes IT Report 3/16/05
Oakland County: http://www.co.oakland.mi.us/wireless/
Oakland County GIS Highlights: (See last Section Wireless Oakland) http://www.co.oakland.mi.us/gis/assets/docs/GSCHighlights_20050218.pdf
Meeting Notes from Wireless Oakland Private Sector Summit: http://www.co.oakland.mi.us/wireless/assets/docs/wo_privatesectorpresentation.pdf