Westminster Goes Wireless

Westminster City Council hosts event to showcase its initiative for a 'wireless city'

April 29, 2004

2 Min Read

LONDON -- Westminster City Council is hosting an event for local authorities from all around the UK to explain how to transform into a ‘Wireless City’.

Westminster is revolutionising the way it does business through the use of wireless technology. A pilot in Soho will lead to Westminster becoming a place where businesses and residents can benefit from leading-edge technology, delivering a new standard of service across the City. From Soho, the council plans to extend the wireless scheme to create wireless 'hotspots', and then link these to form a City-wide network.

Those attending the showcase will receive demonstrations of the technology as well as the opportunity to get involved in a Q & A with those behind the initiative.

The pilot currently allows CCTV cameras and noise monitoring equipment to operate over a wireless network. This means that the system is flexible enough to respond to sudden outbreaks of criminal activity New cameras and equipment can be installed at very short notice and low cost - but the potential of the project goes much further. The pilot allows council officers to link to the council's network from the street, meaning that they can resolve problems and access information immediately. The technology could soon be applied to the entire range of council services, at a fraction of the usual cost and offering the most flexible public services of any local authority.

The pilot scheme in Soho is being supported by a group of global leaders in the field of information technology, including Intel, Cisco Systems and Telindus. These firms are lending their latest technology to the project and helping facilitate The Wireless City. Intel has worked closely with the Council in an advisory capacity on the definition, development and roll-out of this pioneering initiative.

Cllr Simon Milton, Leader of Westminster Council, who is introducing the showcase said: "The concept of the Wirefree City is one of the most exciting developments in Westminster's history. It will allow us to offer opportunity to our residents through community education schemes on our housing estates and integrated social service provision across the city. We will be better able to reduce the threat and the fear of crime through a flexible approach to community safety, cleansing and CCTV by reacting to events as they happen. It will also help us maintain low taxes through the savings that the scheme can offer.

"Westminster is set to become a community united by cutting edge technology and by sharing of the benefits of progress. We are delighted to be able to share our experience in pioneering this technology with other local authorities."

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