NYC subways to get Wi-Fi, cell service

Posted on August 2, 2010

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) board approved an agreement with Transit Wireless LLC to equip the 277 underground New York City subway stations for cell phone and wireless Internet service.

The system can locate the precise source of a cell phone transmission and relay this information to the cellular telephone carrier and could then be provided and used by 9-1-1 communications centers so police and paramedics can respond to the exact location in case of an emergency.

Transit Wireless LLC is a partnership between Nab Construction Enterprises/Q-Wireless and Dianet Communications and Transit Technologies LLC, which was created specifically to develop transportation-related wireless projects in New York City. Transit Wireless will design, market, install, own, operate and maintain a neutral, shared wireless infrastructure to provide seamless, uninterrupted commercial wireless services to New York City subway riders within the 277 underground stations of the subway system.

Within two years of an order to proceed from the MTA, Transit Wireless must install cell phone and wireless Internet service at six stations; secure at least one major cell phone carrier for the stations and demonstrate the effectiveness of the system.

If it meets those goals, the partnership must complete the remaining stations within four additional years.

Transit Wireless will undertake all installation costs and pay the MTA an estimated $46.8 million over 10 years.


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