Lake County Motorist

Suburban Chicagoland commuter and motorist weblog

The Little-Known WiFi Engine that Could

The Little WiFi Engine that Could Did you know that Illinois enacted legislation to develop a plan to provide wireless internet access on passenger trains? The bill was passed in June 2007. A plan was to be finalized by December 31, 2007, but I can’t find any progress reports on this initiative. With the transit budget issues rightly taking legislative focus towards the end of 2007, my guess is that the WiFi plan deadline wasn’t met.

WiFi access on the trains would increase personal productivity of a Metra commute, as well as create additional revenue for the state. I currently use my Metra time to sleep or zone out (which also has its purpose) but I’d love to have WiFi on board so that I could check email or work online. Factor in a reasonable pricing structure, and you’ve got a winning benefit. Amtrak’s Hiawatha Line commuters would benefit from the convenience of WiFi during their hour-and-a half trek between Milwaukee and Union Station, as would Amtrak passengers throughout the rest of Illinois.

Boston’s already piloting WiFi on trains. When’s our turn?

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Filed under: Mass Transit, , ,

3 Responses - Comments are closed.

  1. kilax says:

    This would be great! I have been wanting a wireless card for my laptop forever…

  2. lcmotorist says:

    Hey kilax, do you mean the mobile broadband cards like the AirCard, or a regular wireless card? I’ve wanted one of the AirCards for a while, but my frugality keeps me away. However, I hear Verizon is coming out with a cheaper low-usage plan for $39.95 a month. If they can drop it to $24.95, I might go for it!

  3. […] The Little-Known WiFi Engine that Could « Lake County Motorist (tags: wifi wireless internet metra chicago trains transportation transit commute) […]

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