FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE July 3, 2012
HONOLULU’S KOKUA WIRELESS NAMED A TOP WORLD INNOVATION
(Tues., July 3, 2012)—Mayor Peter Carlisle today said he is very pleased that Honolulu’s Kokua Wireless free internet access initiative has been named one of the world’s 100 most innovative and inspiring urban infrastructure projects. The City will soon expand free WiFi access to Ala Moana and Kapiolani parks through a private grant.
“Free municipal wireless internet access is helping Honolulu become a smart, informed, fun, modern City,” Carlisle said. “We’re very proud to be on the cutting edge of urban infrastructure.”
Kokua Wireless was one of 14 U.S. projects cited in KPMG International’s second edition of “Infrastructure 100: World Cities Edition,” a comprehensive report showcasing 100 innovative projects across the globe.
According to KPMG, the report provides a look into projects that make great cities, with a particular focus on innovations that make them “Cities of the Future,” – places where people want to live and do business.
The Kokua Wireless initiative began in 2005, when technology entrepreneur Aryn Nakaoka, president of Tri-Net Solutions Honolulu, and Gordon Bruce, Chief Information Officer of the City and County of Honolulu, launched the idea of businesses sharing their internet access via antennas. The scheme quickly gained momentum by word of mouth and now has nearly 200 nodes. In exchange for participation, businesses receive free advertising. Every 30 minutes, the internet connection is refreshed to prevent illegal downloading; when the user is reconnected they are routed to the website of one of the businesses housing an antenna. The initiative will be expanded this month to Ala Moana Regional Park and Kapiolani Park.
“This is truly a grass-roots effort, and demonstrates what can happen when the private sector and government agencies collaborate on making a city a better place to live, work and play,” said Bruce.
Businesses or individuals interested in being part of this project can contact Aryn Nakaoka at firstname.lastname@example.org or Gordon Bruce at email@example.com . The complete list of 100 projects cited in the KPMG report is available at www.kpmg.com/infrastructure100 .
Media contact: Louise Kim McCoy, Mayor’s Office, 768-7798.