Lancaster trustee pushes for free public WiFi

Local News

LANCASTER, N.Y. (WIVB)- Village of Lancaster Trustee Bill Schroeder believes an agreement between the Village and Internet provider Blue Wireless would be a win-win.

Blue Wireless wants to expand its network, so it’s offering free WiFi for Lancaster’s business district in exchange for space to put a cell tower.

Schroeder started exploring the idea a few months back, and told News 4 the service would benefit residents of Lancaster by saving on their data plans while out and about, and would also come in handy during village festivals.

The free WiFi would extend throughout the central business district in Lancaster and parts of Broadway.

Free public WiFi has been explored by other area villages, but it hasn’t taken off in Hamburg, Williamsville or Depew.

East Aurora village officials told News 4 the cost didn’t outweigh the benefits.

But Schroeder said for Lancaster the deal makes sense, and he hasn’t gotten any backlash yet.

The 50-by-50 foot vacant lot Blue Wireless wants for a tower is just sitting there, Schroeder said.

“Basically the land was given to the Village from the railroad years ago, and it sits there unoccupied and it’s kind of a landlocked piece. So it would work out good for everybody, they’d get what they need and we’ve be able to provide a tremendous service to the people who come to the village and visit or shop in our areas,” he told News 4.

The village board will have to vote on the idea before any action is taken.

Schroeder anticipates a vote by October.

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