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City of Green Bay to provide public wifi at four neighborhood parks

Posted at 11:09 AM, Sep 27, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-27 20:37:30-04

GREEN BAY (NBC 26) — The Green Bay Common Council has decided to allocate a portion of federal coronavirus relief funding to provide public wifi at neighborhood parks. Free Wifi access will soon be available at these four parks around the city:

  • Seymour Park
  • Navarino Park
  • Eastman Park
  • St. John Park

In a 10-to-2 vote, the council voted to allocate just over $253,000 that the city received from the state through the CARES Act. The council voted to use the funds under the Essential Frontline Employee Relief Program. The program was created by the city to support public service activities for low and-moderate income individuals.

The decision came after the pandemic drew attention to the amount of Green Bay residents who are still without Wifi at home.

“Especially now with COVID and all the connectivity issues for Green Bay students we thought if we could help implement better connectivity that that would be well worth while,” said district 7 alderperson Randy Scannell.

The objective of providing broadband and wireless access in local parks is to assist those who do not otherwise have access to do things like remote work, remote school, and other needs due to the pandemic and the social distance requirements.

Residents say they’re glad the city is addressing what they say is a growing need in the community. Green Bay mother Wyona Farr says she's struggled to afford Internet in the past, often having to search for public Wifi for herself and her children.

“I had to go to certain places and figure out where to get free Wifi," Farr said. "It was very stressful but at the end of the day it taught me how to plan accordingly to what I need to be doing for the sake of myself and my children.”

Farr believes having public Wifi just steps away in a nearby park will provide relief for those who are still struggling to afford such an essential service.

“It’s something that everybody struggles with," Farr said. "Having the resource out here and getting it in the parks I believe is beneficial for everybody.”