City of Rolling Meadows rolls out wireless net

Rolling Meadows, Ill., population 24,000, this month launched its own wireless metropolitan area network.

The IEEE 802.11b Ethernet MAN has 15 wireless nodes to link the Chicago suburb's schools, libraries, parks and city government buildings.

The project used $1 million worth of hardware from 3Com Corp. of Santa Clara, Calif., including Wireless LAN Access Point 2000 devices, a SuperStack 3 Webcache 3000 caching platform, a SuperStack 3 NBX voice-data gateway and omnidirectional antennas.

Eswoosh Inc. of Rolling Meadows will host a Web portal for the city, at,, where residents can get free e-mail accounts and download city forms, Mayor Thomas F. Menzel said.

When the city began work on the project three years ago, Menzel said, it was tough getting all the players -- vendors, school districts and city officials -- to work together.

Although wireless networking is convenient and interesting, he said, there were 'all those turf battles. One of our city slogans is 'The best way to predict the future is to invent it.' We've done that here.'

About the Author

Trudy Walsh is a senior writer for GCN.

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