Whats the prupose of the feasibilty study? Sounds like grant money. Would the Earthlink, Google, or ATT use their own feasibilty study?
Or is this a non-technical feasibity study?

Tom DeReggi
RapidDSL & Wireless, Inc
IntAirNet- Fixed Wireless Broadband

----- Original Message ----- From: "Dawn DiPietro" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
To: "WISPA General List" <wireless@wispa.org>
Sent: Wednesday, February 07, 2007 2:50 PM
Subject: Re: [WISPA] Widespread abuse of FCC rules, a list...was TV whitespaces

St. Louis County champions regionwide wireless Internet
By Clay Barbour
WiFi users

CLAYTON — Tired of its provincial reputation, and hoping to gain an edge in the marketplace, St. Louis County is seriously considering a plan that could bring wireless Internet to the entire region.

The St. Louis Economic Development Collaborative, an arm of the county's economic development council, is working with a communications engineering firm to determine what would be needed — and how much it would cost — to offer Wi-Fi access across the county.

Officials also have started talking to leaders in surrounding counties about the possibility of joining forces and offering such a service regionally.

Wi-Fi is the term used to describe the service that allows customers to connect to the Internet without plugging into the wall. Many St. Louis area businesses already offer the service to their customers and a Wi-Fi network already covers a 42-square-block area around Kiener Plaza in downtown St. Louis.

But the freedom of offering it everywhere within a region has become an increasingly popular idea. Cities such as Philadelphia and Portland, Ore., have Wi-Fi systems in place. And cities such as San Francisco and New York are considering it.

"It's a tremendous economic development tool, one that becomes more and more important in this high-tech age," said David Leezer, collaborative vice president. "Just think of the versatility of something like this. It could really set this area apart."

The collaborative hired NetLabs of St. Louis to do the study, paying the firm $67,500. Leezer said the next step of the process — after determining what infrastructure is needed — would be to open the process to Internet providers to see who could best do the job.

Google and EarthLink are two of the biggest companies in the field, providing Wi-Fi for several major cities. But Leezer said local providers such as Charter Communications and AT&T also could compete for the job.

Should the plan prove successful, the St. Louis region would be the first in the country to offer Wi-Fi on such a wide scale. For example, Philadelphia's system covers 135 square miles. St. Louis County alone stretches about 524 square miles.

Leezer has had meetings with the Leadership Council of Southwest Illinois and the Economic Development Center of St. Charles County. Both like the idea of regional Wi-Fi.

"We are certainly interested in cooperating with St. Louis on this," said Greg Prestemon, St. Charles County EDC president. "Approaching it on such a wide scale gives you the potential to do some neat things."

Patrick McKeehan, executive director of the Leadership Council, said he is still looking into the issue and trying to gauge its importance to Madison and St. Clair counties.

"I think it's exciting, though," he said. "I see the long-term benefit, but we still need to explore it."

Leezer said he has not officially met with anyone from the city of St. Louis or Franklin and Jefferson counties yet.

"We are going to walk, before we run," he said. "We want to do this. If someone else wants to join us, they will be welcomed."

The city of St. Louis has been working for some months to set up a citywide network.

Ahead of the curve

The chance to be on the cutting edge of technology is something that appeals to St. Louis County Executive Charlie A. Dooley, who is pushing the proposal.

"If you want to attract businesses, you need the right kind of infrastructure," Dooley said. "This is the infrastructure of the future. We are going to need it one day, so why not be ahead of the curve."

The St. Louis area suffered the country's second-worst number of job losses for the year that ended in November, about 3,300 jobs. While some experts have challenged those numbers, many still worry about the region's perceived struggle to attract, and keep, businesses.

The county is considering a wireless system that would offer residents and businesses a tiered level of service. Customers could get a low-end service for a small fee and a faster, more expensive, service for a higher price. Dooley said he would like to have it in place within the next three years.

Installation of such a system can be pricey. Typically the hardware costs about $50,000 a square mile in low-density areas and $150,000 a square mile for urban areas.

Leezer said it's too early to say how much any system would cost the county. But he did say that it would likely be a public-private partnership in which the vendor would incur most, if not all, costs.

"We are not looking at having taxpayers fund this," he said.

Philadelphia used a similar system for its Wi-Fi. EarthLink paid the city for the right to build and maintain a citywide system, which included installing transmittal devices on about 4,000 of the city's street lamp pole arms and providing residents and visitors with 22 area hot spots.

EarthLink charges and collects the user fees, which run from about $9.95 a month to $20 a month.

The program met with some resistance from Comcast, the city's main cable and Internet provider. This has been the trend in most cities considering the service. While such a system does not replace the existing providers, it often offers the same service for less.

"It sounds like a great idea to me, if it can be pulled off," said University City Mayor Joe Adams. "Anything to help our citizens connect, especially those who might not ordinarily be able to afford it."

Several cities in St. Louis County, including University City, Crestwood and Maplewood, were considering setting up their own Wi-Fi system. Dooley said their interest in the new technology sparked the larger idea.

"We set up the economic collaborative to help everyone in the county work toward common goals," he said. "This idea makes sense for everyone."

Dooley said he would like to see the proposal spread to all counties in the St. Louis area. Such a move would mitigate the cost of the project by spreading it out and strengthen the entire region's appeal when it comes to attracting new people and businesses.

"Really, when it comes to something like this, it helps us all, if we all get on board," he said

Link below;

Tom DeReggi wrote:

I didn't say free, I said Not $90,000.
What should it cost to do a feasibilty study for a city?
Why does every city need to start from Ground Zero?

I'd rather $10,000-$20,000 go into a study with a competent engineer like you, and the other $$70-80,000 go into actually paying an integrator to build the network. Or better yet, keep the government out of it, and let the Local WISP that already knows the environment and how to do it, be on the top of the list to get the job. My understanding is that Downtown St Louis aint that big (But haven't been there), whats there to study?

Here's a MESH budget for you....
$10,000 to get an OEM StarOS system FCC certified.
$10,000 for a "study"
(Maybe use OSLR for the MESH).
$30,000 for 60 AP repeaters ($500 each w/ antennas, mounts, and CM9s).
(Remember the CM9s support 2.4G-6G on the fly, so the integrator would have the flexibilty to adjust as they identified the obstacles that needed consideration) $40,000 to install and troubleshoot (5 hours per Access Point @ $100 per hour, plus an extra $10,000 for the final over view and documenting of what was found)

If the network didn't work, you'd know exactly why, and you'd have only spent the $90,000 to get equivellent data as the Feasibilty study.
If the network did work, you'd be done.
If the network partially worked, you'd be half way there, and would have a clear picture on whta moneys was needed to finish the job.

I could replicate this model using Alvarion, with their new low cost Comnet program, in a PtP platform. (Although would be less flexible on which spectrum appropriate, so maybe would need an exchange program from a distributor if channels needed varying). And maybe the end project would cost a tad bit more, if more super cells were needed than expected intially.

The point is, to many people spend time trying to predict, rather than just going and finsing out what the situation really is. No better way to know for sure, than to put up gear and listen.

Now what about support.... Local WISP, already has paid executives and local isntallers. Local WISP already has support department. Sure local WISP will want grant to help increase his staff size to handle demand, but thats an understandable cost, and a shared cost. The biggest costs are the learning curve and the management costs, but none of that would need to be paid, as the WISP already has that knowledge and experience, and peices in place, so the local governement would only be paying for just the new working staff (The hands on the end of the arms).

Sure, I understand, my approach is not realistic based on the Politicaly correct proceedures a governement needs to follow in an award/bid situation using others(taxpayers) money. Sure you could argue that those that do not plan in advance pay for it later. But its likely a local WISP already did the bulk of the planning years ago. I'm just saying that its IRONIC that a network can be built for near the price of a feasibilty study, if the politics was not involved. The truth is, Muni Wireless is expensive to launch, because they generally duplicate the effort that is already available locally, select an out of state provider not familiar with the local land, and they have unknowlegeable people needing to make decission on how to use knowledgeable industry bidders.

Tom DeReggi
RapidDSL & Wireless, Inc
IntAirNet- Fixed Wireless Broadband

----- Original Message ----- From: "Jack Unger" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
To: "WISPA General List" <wireless@wispa.org>
Sent: Wednesday, February 07, 2007 12:16 PM
Subject: Re: [WISPA] Widespread abuse of FCC rules, a list...was TV whitespaces


I'm just wondering who should perform the necessary feasibility study for free?


Tom DeReggi wrote:

I wouldn't bypass the feasibility study, just the $90,000 to perform it. The feasibility study may also be to see who is already there and what impact it would have on existing providers.

Tom DeReggi
RapidDSL & Wireless, Inc
IntAirNet- Fixed Wireless Broadband

----- Original Message ----- From: "Dennis Burgess - 2K Wireless" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
To: "'WISPA General List'" <wireless@wispa.org>
Sent: Wednesday, February 07, 2007 2:11 AM
Subject: RE: [WISPA] Widespread abuse of FCC rules, a list...was TV whitespaces

Interesting thread, very good points on all fronts.

I wanted to point out something, something that the guy who was talking
about "consultants" etc. You are correct in that many people who are
consultants don't know the real world implications. Us WISPs have first hand knowledge of what these things will do, what the bands, hardware, etc
is capable of.

A recent "study" was commissioned in St. Louis. This was a feasibility study that netted some "consultant" over $90,000 bucks from the way I read it. What was this for? To see if the city of St. Louis can put in a wireless
network covering downtown. Hmmmm. My first thought on this was....

"So the consultant needs to conduct a study on IF you can do this?" Does he not know what he is doing? I can tell you I can do it, might take me a bit to do the necessary research, but hell for that price, I will do the
research, finding bandwidth, contracts, and power/data agreements.

This is the kind of thing that us, using license exempt bands nee to fight. We need to make it public, that this is a misuse of taxpayer's dollars. We need to ensure that this is shown to cut out the small business, in favor of
large, non-local companies doing the work.

A few other things that would help us WISPs out, someone in the FCC ready to listen to our findings of non-complaint gear/overpowered radios, someone that can actually say, you get me these things, the proof to say, and then we will do something with it. Don't happen very often. If someone calls the FCC, how many times have you heard anything back on them? I have heard
interference stories, even from cell companies, (recent on the lists).

The story about the IT Person telling the WISP to use 4.9, is a prime
example of something that the FCC should be ON THE BALL about. And also
some clarification on band usages, power limits, etc, where several
questions and things are open to "interpretation", not closed down enough to
be "solid" in court or anywhere.

Just a few thoughts.


<earlier discussions pruned>

Jack Unger ([EMAIL PROTECTED]) - President, Ask-Wi.Com, Inc.
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