The area near Marikina City Hall is now a free WiFi zone.
This after the Marikina City Council passed Ordinance 76, Series of 2019, or An Ordinance Granting Free WiFi Access to the Residents of Marikina City and Appropriating the Necessary Funds Thereof.
Percival Canlas, head of the IT section of the City Council, said the concept is to share the Internet connection of the city government to the residents.
“The main idea here is to fully use the unutilized bandwidth and to share it to the residents of Marikina,” Canlas told this reporter in an interview over the weekend.
He, however, clarified that not all barangays (villages) will be covered by the free WiFi connection. The ordinance shall cover public schools, parks and other similar and strategic areas within the city.
“This will be piloted first at the Freedom Park, which is just beside city hall,” the officer said.
As the Internet connection resources of the city government is left unused by city officials and employees after working hours, the unused network services or allocation and free access thereof by the public would be scheduled from 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. on weekdays, and from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. on weekends, including holidays.
“We will be using the bandwidth of the city government. The working hours of the city government is from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and since our Internet is unlimited, so this ordinance shall cover from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., including Saturdays and Sundays and holidays,” Canlas explained.
“This is not 24/7, but it’s the whole day during weekends,” he added.
He also said that the Internet connection will not get slow due to the influx of WiFi subscribers because it has a usage limit and won’t allow access to YouTube and other videos sites.
“It has no password, just an authentication. You will see some advertisements of the city government,” he added.
Canlas added the city government is also looking into the possibility of installing free WiFi in all barangays.
“It is being studied now if the city government can really afford to widen free Internet access to all barangays,” he said.
Under the ordinance, the city’s management information system and call center has been tasked to draft the implementing guidelines as well as to oversee supervision, management, infrastructure and maintenance of the network.