Recognizing that the onset of the pandemic had ripped the Band-Aid off of pre-existing socio-economic inequalities and vulnerabilities, the Office of Economic Development took to steps to promote equity. These efforts included addressing the digital divide by expanding free Wi-Fi reach to the exterior of schools, libraries, and City buildings.
Recently, the City started offering free Wi-Fi to mobile home parks in the 87507 Zipcode. A pilot project was recently installed at Atocha Mobile Home Park, whose management adopted the service primarily for the benefit of its student residents.
Atocha is the first of six potential mobile home park Wi-Fi installations in the densely populated Districts 3 and 4. The City also anticipates installing free Wi-Fi at public housing in the Hopewell Mann area.
The Department of Information Technology and its Geographic Information Systems Division provided the technical expertise. Larry Worstell, IT Infrastructure Manager, says: “Putting technology at the service of the public good is central to our role, and mostly behind the scenes. When you have visited the sites, helping underserved families is uniquely rewarding.”
Find out more about the free Wi-Fi program here.