Business

ImOn launches free Wi-Fi in Hiawatha parks

Splits cost of initial equipment with city

The ImOn Communications company sign is seen outside the GreatAmerica Building on Tuesday, July 5, 2011.     (David Scrivner/SourceMedia Group News) ¬
The ImOn Communications company sign is seen outside the GreatAmerica Building on Tuesday, July 5, 2011. (David Scrivner/SourceMedia Group News) ¬

Visitors to several city parks in Hiawatha can now use their computers, smartphones, tablets and other electronic devices to access free Internet Wi-Fi service.

ImOn Communications on Tuesday said it has completed installation of a Wi-Fi network in Guthridge, Fay M. Clark, and Tucker parks. Users of the Wi-Fi network will get two hours of free access daily.

ImOn’s residential Internet customers will have unlimited free access to the network. The project is a joint venture between ImOn and the city of Hiawatha.

The initial cost of the equipment for the network was split equally between ImOn and the city. Cedar Rapids-based ImOn will cover the ongoing costs for support, maintenance and Internet bandwidth for the network.

The commercial grade, state-of-the-art network uses a series of access points located throughout the parks that are connected to ImOn’s high-speed 10 gigabit fiber network. The network can handle hundreds of simultaneous users.

In a news release, Hiawatha Mayor Tom Thies said the project is an example of how public-private partnerships can be formed to provide valuable new services to the community.

“Internet connectivity is such an important part of our daily lives, and completion of this project makes Internet access readily available where we live and play,” Thies said.

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ImOn also offers free Wi-Fi service in downtown Cedar Rapids, the McGrath Amphitheatre, and NewBo City Market.

The Gazette Co., owner of The Gazette, is an investor in ImOn Communications.

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