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Wednesday, 02 May 2007 00:00

Downtown Sylva gets free wireless access

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When Rhonda Williams fired up her laptop in the Sylva library a couple of weeks ago, she was pleasantly surprised to pick up a wireless Internet signal.

 

Williams came to the library looking for a quiet place to work when her kids took over the house during the week of spring break. Williams was not only able to work off her hard drive, but check email and surf the web as needed.

“This is neat,” Williams said. “I’ll be doing this a lot.”

Williams had discovered the free wireless Internet network that now blankets the downtown area of Sylva thanks to Metrostat Communications.

Metrostat Communications, a local telecommunications provider in Sylva, has launched a wireless network that will provide Internet access to visitors and shoppers throughout town, whether sipping coffee at Annie’s Bakery or sitting on a bench watching your kids play at Poteet Park.

Metrostat has been systematically building a fiber optic network in Sylva for several years to provide everything from phone to Internet service. The “Metrostat SylvaNet – Wireless Initiative” compliments that fiber network infrastructure by extending their reach and refining their ability to deliver high speed Internet access.

“We want to bring affordable internet access to the people of Sylva,” said Metrostat founder and CEO John Kevlin. “Wireless networks offer the best opportunity we have to connect the rest of this community to the Internet and the network technology being deployed by Metrostat is offering an inexpensive and easy way to do it.”

The wireless Internet signal reaches throughout the greater Sylva downtown area. Metrostat also has wireless hot spots along the N.C. 107 corridor towards Webster, providing wireless Internet access for homes and local businesses along that route.

“This is really a community project and we are excited to work with individuals, organizations, local government and others in this community to build out the availability of free and low cost Internet access,” Kevlin said. “Our goal with this project is to support economic development, reduce the cost of access, support tourism through wireless Internet access at business locations, and to deliver more choices by developing wireless Internet access into homes, businesses, government buildings and public areas across the Town of Sylva and into surrounding areas.”

The wireless Internet service is free for occasional users visiting downtown. Businesses or households that want to use the wireless as their primary Internet connection on a regular basis will need to subscribe to the service.

For additional information about Metrostat SylvaNet visit www.sylvanet.us.

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