A project to provide free public Wi-Fi hotspots in a number of locations across Mayo is progressing, with work on connections starting in the coming weeks.
The Wifi4EU scheme is an initiative of the European Commission which provides funding to local authorities to provide free Wi-Fi access in public places such as main streets, public parks, museums, libraries and other public areas.
Mayo County Council were successful in securing €60,000 under the WiFi4EU initiative. This €60,000 in European funding will be match funded by the Department of Rural and Community Development, bringing the total funding for this project in Mayo to €120,000.
Westnet Broadband Mayo Ltd were awarded the contract to roll out the initiative, which was signed in Áras an Chontae this week.
Nine locations in Mayo have already been selected to host this new service. These are: Belmullet, Newport, Ballina, Crossmolina, Swinford, Ballinrobe, Claremorris, Castlebar and Turlough.
Chief executive of Mayo County Council, Peter Hynes, said: "We are delighted to sign the contract with Westnet, a local broadband provider here in Mayo, to set up outdoor public Wi-Fi access points. This will provide free Wi-Fi for visitors and local residents across the county, helping to bring about a better digitally connected Mayo. Congratulations must go to everyone who worked so hard in getting this project developed.”
Cathaoirleach of Mayo County Council Cllr Brendan Mulroy, added: "It’s a fantastic achievement to get such connectivity to County Mayo. I commend those involved in this project and look forward to seeing the people of Mayo benefiting from this project"
Paul Cunnane, CEO of Westnet added: "As a Castlebar-based business we are honoured to have been chosen to deliver this innovative project. Our mission has always been to bring high-speed broadband to the people of Mayo and beyond, and this scheme gives us a new opportunity to continue that work."