Tuesday, 1 September 2020

Connected. How Launceston is beating many much bigger Australian cities


Free wifi is now available across the entire Launceston city centre in Tasmania, with locals making good use of high-speed internet.

Delivered under the Launceston City Deal, the project has significantly expanded public access to the city’s free wifi network.

Popular recreation spots like Riverbend Park, the Cataract Gorge and Waverley Lake were among the last areas connected to what is now Tasmania’s largest local government-managed public wifi network.

Federal Minister for Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure Alan Tudge said the City Deal project put Launceston ahead of many major cities across Australia.

“Fifty new wireless access points have been rolled out across Launceston under the City Deal to see all public spaces in the CBD covered by the network,” Tudge said.

“It’s great to see it up and running for the public and visitors, providing a free and fast network without time restrictions.”

Tasmanian Minister for State Growth and Science and Technology Michael Ferguson said the wifi expansion formed part of the jointly funded $19.4 million City Heart Project, a centrepiece of the City Deal.

“The City Heart Project is all about redefining central Launceston as a modern regional retail, cultural and business hub by redeveloping critical local infrastructure and supporting events that together are re-energising the city’s centre,” Ferguson said.
The Mayor of the City of Launceston, Albert van Zetten, said public wifi networks were highly utilised by tourists, students and disadvantaged communities.

“This is a fantastic project, made possible by the Launceston City Deal, which will help make our city more accessible to visitors," he said. 

“While the Covid-19 pandemic has effectively put our tourism industry on hold, we want to ensure that we are ready to bounce back as a prime tourism destination when the time is right."

To access the new network on smartphone, tablet, laptop or other wireless connected device, visitors can join the wifi network called “Launceston WiFi”.

A portal page will appear and once the terms and conditions have been accepted, users can click “Get online”.

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