NEWS RELEASE

January 25, 2018

The City of Santa Maria becoming a Giga-City

A blazing fast internet network to benefit the public is being built by the City of Santa Maria and its partner company Wave Broadband, to bring reliable, high-speed Gigabit fiber-based connectivity services to its municipal departments, and eventually businesses, schools, and residents as a whole.

“This investment is designed to spark substantial economic growth in and around the City as businesses and public services take advantage of the public-private investment into the community,” City spokesman Mark van de Kamp said. “This is a priority for Santa Maria to attract new tech companies and employees who are choosing where to locate based on the availability of connectivity and high-speed Internet service.”

As the City and Wave Broadband build the core fiber network, the Santa Maria Area Transit (SMAT) and its technology partner, NewTel Consulting, will lay the foundation for the City’s high-capacity Wi-Fi wireless network by embarking on an On-Board Passenger Wi-Fi proof of concept that will provide free high-speed connectivity to passengers of a selected City bus route starting this summer, with the goal of extending the connectivity to all routes in the future.

Additionally, the City Manager’s Office is in the process of kick-starting its plans for a Smart City – Safe City concept that will provide wireless high-speed Internet connectivity to businesses that need reliable fiber-based and cost-effective wireless Internet connectivity services to continue fueling the City’s economic growth efforts, and to also provide high-speed mobile Internet connectivity in support of several public safety-oriented activities. This same high-capacity wireless network will be used by the City’s Police and Fire Departments.

“With the exponential growth of Internet traffic, the City sees this project as essential to the community’s economic expansion,” Mayor Alice M. Patino said. “Our partner, Wave Broadband, has the expertise and understands the complexities of the various projects that will tie our fiber system together and meet our connectivity goals, so that Santa Maria will become a Smart City – Safe City, the first truly Gigabit City on the Central Coast.”

The completion of the fiber ring this year will allow Santa Maria to upgrade the City’s public safety network, become a regional emergency dispatch center, and future-proof the City. It will also allow the City to offer public Wi-Fi in its revitalizing downtown core, and for Wave to evaluate providing Wi-Fi in residential neighborhoods.

Also, the City is conscious of the need to provide high-speed internet connectivity to disadvantaged residents and students, to improve their lives and provide opportunities, and therefore plans to offer free high-speed Wi-Fi in selected areas throughout the City.

“There’s never been a better time to help those less fortunate in our City,” said Carlos Delatorre, President and CEO of NewTel Consulting. The same smart technologies that the City will use to improve worker efficiency and supply citizen services will also be used to help the disadvantaged.

“Partnering with Wave provides tremendous benefits to the City and its customers,” City Manager Jason Stilwell said. “The community will gain access to unprecedented levels of bandwidth capacity that will impact the way they work and learn.”

The ultimate goal is to deploy and sustain Smart City projects that will empower residents and employees to keep pace with the accelerated change of technologies that are designed to improve the lives and safety of residents, capable of increasing economic activity, and designed to ensure the prosperity of the community. The four-mile geographically redundant network ring (Main Street to Miller Street to Betteravia Road to Blosser Road) links key components of the City’s infrastructure including its highly secure Data Center inside the Police Department.

Many years ago, the City enacted initiatives which gave unprecedented water rights for the benefit of the agricultural community, local businesses and residents. High-speed Broadband is changing the economical, operational and public safety landscape of communities world-wide, and with these new Smart City initiatives, the City has begun charting a course to the future by embracing and using new innovative technologies for the betterment of the community.

As part of this partnership, Wave Broadband will receive a City license to use a portion of the City-owned network for its own fiber optic cable, and license to co-locate its Network Operations Center inside the City’s Data Center.