Wednesday, December 27, 2006

State Shelves Wireless Plans at Rest Stops

The state's idea to turn the interstate rest areas into Internet wireless hot spots has apparently hit a snag according to the State Journal-Register.
Only one vendor responded to an Illinois Department of Transportation request for proposals to provide free, wireless Internet access (known as WiFi) at the state's rest stops. However, the vendor's offer was rejected because the company missed a mandatory pre-bid meeting conducted by the agency in October.

Consequently, IDOT is back to square one in its efforts to provide WiFi to the motoring public. IDOT hoped to have the service available in 2007, but that timetable is uncertain now.

"Certainly, we knew this was aggressive in that we hoped we could provide the service with no charge to the state and no charge to the consumer," IDOT spokesman Matt Vanover said. "We will re-evaluate our options after the first of the year. We'll see if changes have to be made in order to get a better response."

Maybe, it would help if the state stopped trying to manage all the rest areas under one contract. Try splitting it up. Certainly the state welcome centers would be better off if it region ran their own operations.

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