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City of Chicago Embraces Wi-Fi Technology


Seventy-Nine Chicago Public Library Locations Provide Free Wi-Fi Services to Communities and City Workers Through Airespace’s WLAN Platform

SAN JOSE, CA -- 12/06/2004 -- Airespace, Inc.® today announced that the Airespace Wireless Enterprise Platform has been deployed throughout the Chicago Public Library system’s 79 locations to deliver free Wireless LAN (WLAN) services to Chicago residents, library personnel, and mobile City workers. By leveraging the Airespace WLAN system, more communities throughout the City of Chicago can receive easy access to the Internet, as well as to Chicago Public Library’s extensive automated card catalog, online research material, music, videos, and electronic databases. In addition, the Airespace WLAN system enables City field workers to attain easy access to key information when on the road, including a secure channel for Chicago police and public safety personnel. With the Airespace wireless network, the City of Chicago is using the latest in Information Technology (IT) to enrich the lives of its constituents through better knowledge exchange and easier access to information.

“Given the growth in Wi-Fi’s popularity and its ability to transform the way people access information, we felt that it was crucial to broaden our constituents’ exposure to wireless technology,” said Christopher O’Brien, CIO of the City of Chicago. “The Chicago Public Library is a logical first step in this endeavor as it reaches a wide breadth of people across numerous communities.”

The Airespace wireless network deployed in the Chicago Public Library system consists of Airespace 4000 WLAN Switches and Airespace 1200 Access points. All 79 locations in the wireless network are managed centrally from a single location, the Harold Washington Library center, using the award-winning Airespace Control System (ACS) Software. With ACS, the library’s few IT staff members can easily and cost effectively create and provision consistent security policies across all library locations, while using Airespace’s detailed graphical analysis tools to keep the library’s WLAN running smoothly. In addition, ACS’ extremely accurate location tracking software enables rapid fault isolation and problem resolution and provides an easy mechanism for tracking high-value mobile assets in each facility.

“There are unique challenges associated with building and operating a wireless network that spans an entire city and serves thousands of users every single day,” said Al Ruiz, network architect for the City of Chicago. “Airespace has a demonstrated ability to scale in size without sacrificing ease of use, flexibility, and security. This will become increasingly strategic as we continue to expand our wireless initiatives throughout our city.”

“Airespace’s deployment throughout the Chicago Public Library is a great illustration of our platform’s ability to meet the unique networking requirements of municipalities and other large WLAN deployments,” said Alan Cohen, vice president of marketing at Airespace. “We are pleased to be working with the City of Chicago on this groundbreaking project, bringing the benefits of wireless mobility to entirely new communities.”

About the Chicago Public Library

The Chicago Public Library is composed of the Harold Washington Library Center, two regional libraries and 76 neighborhood branches. The Library provides free access to the Internet in all of its locations and offers a rich resource of books, DVDs, videos and more, as well as free public programs for children, teens and adults. For more information, visit the Library’s web site at, or call the Chicago Public Library at (312) 747-4300.

About Airespace, Inc.

Airespace designs and develops intelligent wireless networking platforms that support business-critical applications. The company has set the standard for enterprise Wireless LANs, having earned CMP LLC’s “Best of Interop Award,” Network Computing’s “Editor’s Choice Award” and “Well Connected Product of the Year,” Network World’s “World Class Award” and “Best of the Tests Award,” Internet Telephony’s “Product of the Year,” eWeek’s “Annual Excellence Award,” and nomination as one of the “Best Wireless Products of 2003” in InfoWorld’s “Reader’s Choice” Awards. With dynamic RF management, air-tight security, seamless mobility, and support for real-time applications such as voice, Airespace helps enterprises implement secure and manageable Wireless networks worldwide.

For more information on Airespace and its products, visit or call (+1) 408-635-2000.

Airespace is a registered trademark of Airespace, Inc.


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