City of Douglasville

Why Was Aerohive Selected

  • Controller-less architecture enabled simplified deployment installation
  • Reliable coverage for 100-acre municipal campus, with both indoor and outdoor facilities
  • Ease of management with HiveManager for monitoring and control

Vibrant Atlanta Suburb Deploys Municipal Wi-Fi

The City of Douglasville, Georgia is located about 20 miles west of Atlanta, and serves as the county seat for Douglas County. With a rich history dating back to 1875, its 32,000 residents enjoy many year round events and activities. Downtown Douglasville is a nationally designated Main Street city and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The City is host to many special events, including annual parades, competitions and outdoor concerts. Douglasville is also a regular host of Little League World Series tournaments at Hunter Memorial Park, which also includes a newly renovated athletic complex with tennis courts, ball fields and batting cages.

The Challenge

The City of Douglasville was not able to consider public Wi-Fi until it received a grant from Google as part of its community outreach program. The City began to consider the best options for a municipal Wi-Fi solution spread over 100 acres, including a busy downtown area, Hunter Memorial and Jesse Davis Parks, both of which offer community centers and sports complexes.

The City needed to make considerations for both outdoor and indoor Wi-Fi access in regard to elevation, distance and interference, as well as determine use cases for peak traffic times such as during large events in the downtown square. In addition, the City added computer labs to its community centers equipped with tablet devices and it required the capability to manage and control these devices.

Solution

The City of Douglasville turned to Network Utility Force, a network engineering company to determine, and design the optimal solution for its municipal Wi-Fi, evaluating Aruba, Juniper and others before selecting Aerohive for its controller- less solution. Network Utility Force installed Aerohive AP170 and AP330 access points, as well as Aerohive SR2024 switches, building one of the first municipal Wi-Fi networks with native IPv6 support. Since deployment, IPv6 traffic accounts for over 20% of the total traffic for the network, a statistic that demonstrates the importance of the City’s decision to prioritize its IPv6 implementation plan for the wireless LAN.

The City uses HiveManager Online and can control traffic based on application usage rules, a key feature when monitoring and managing devices used by children in the community. HiveManager also gives insight into the network use, increasingly valuable as the City evaluates usage patterns and considers future planning initiatives.

The network is completely open and users accept terms of service through a captive web portal. Many city employees can now access Wi-Fi, including maintenance employees, day camp workers and community center staff. The community centers can now offer Wi-Fi for events and meeting rooms at its facilities. The Wi-Fi network is transforming downtown life, enabling various market vendors to securely collect electronic payments and giving downtown businesses wireless access. Expansion plans for the network include extending coverage to the public golf course, providing reliable Wi-Fi to pro shop and restaurant employees, as well as players and guests. An upgrade to the wireless network at City Hall is also in future plans, allowing the public TV station to stream content live.

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