LinkNYC is a first-of-its-kind communications network that will bring the fastest available municipal Wi-Fi to millions of New Yorkers, small businesses, and visitors. The five-borough LinkNYC network, which will be funded through advertising revenues, will be built at no cost to taxpayers and will generate more than $500 million in revenue for the City over the first 12 years.

The approach used for this program was to bring the best companies together that are subject matter experts in their respective areas to deliver a product that would provide a public services to citizens and generate a revenue stream for the City of New York. Partners include New York City, Qualcomm Incorporated, Intersection, and CiviQ Smartscapes.


The aging network of public pay telephones for years have been a less than utilized form of communication that were not generating revenues for the city, as well as an eyesore on the community. The challenge of this project was to design, manufacture, install, and operate a state of the art networked communication system that will bring the latest technology to bear to enrich the lives of New Yorkers and visitors from around the world and provide the fastest free Wi-Fi connectivity for free.

Major Requirements:

• Identify Overall customer use cases to meet NYC requirements and provide the best user experience to NYC citizens and visitors
• Identify key partners to support the manufacturing and deployment of structures and associated services bringing jobs and innovation to NYC.
• Work with NYC to schedule pilot structure and testing in New York — completed
• Plan commercial launch by late 2015 — completed
• Leverage key learning’s to develop a repeatable deployment model for other cities.

Performance Targets/ Key Performance Indicators (KPIs):

• Rigorous deployment schedule of 7,500 Links
• Increase internet connectivity to the 730,000+ (~27%) New Yorkers that do not have internet in the home.
• Measure usage statistics of the network to ensure increasingly “Bridging the Digital Divide” for New Yorkers who do not currently have internet connectivity
• Subscription Numbers
• Session Growth
• Data consumed by network by location/neighborhood
• Broad usage of the network by all ages, languages and device types (Android, Windows, iOS, etc.)
• Provide $500M+ revenue to the City of New York

Measurement Methods:
• Weekly tracking of Link deployments (installed, WiFi enabled, power enabled)
• Daily monitoring of usage statistics to evaluate use and health of the network
• Monitor usage location to ensure increasing internet connectivity throughout the 5 Burroughs.
• Tracking of statistics on the network by age and language of users to provide support and enhancements for the citizens of NYC.


• Using open, widely used IEEE 802.11 WiFi standards that are interoperable with other devices/sensors but also compatible with all WiFi enabled smartphones/tablets/computers.
• Pass point Hot Spot 2.0 allows roaming between Links without disengaging from the network
• USB Charging


• Improve street side appearance with a state of the design and technology.
• 911 and 311 access for public information and safety.
• Improving Socio-economic parity for all residents and businesses.
• Improved quality of life for NYC residents and visitors via free internet access and state of the art Wi-Fi service.
• Bridge the digital divide and bring free internet access to underserved communities
• A facility for location manufacturing and production will be established in NYC for the LinkNYC structures.
• Creation of 100 to 150 new full-time jobs in manufacturing, technology and advertising.
• An estimated 650 support jobs in NYC.
• A new revenue stream for NYC.
• Sleek design uses smaller footprint restoring sidewalk space previously used by large payphone enclosures
• ADA Compliant

Demonstration/Deployment Phases:

Phase I Pilot/Demonstration July 2016:

• Minimum 500 deployed Links by June 2016
• WiFi connectivity availability
• 911 Calling enabled
• 311 Services enabled
• Internet Browsing
• Free phone calls in the United States
• Public Service Announcements pushed to Links throughout the city

Phase II Deployment:
• At least 510 gigabit Links will be installed across all 5 boroughs by July 2016.
• Based on current fiber buildout and technical viability, we expect to deploy the first 510 Links in the following areas over the next 7 months:
• 3rd Ave and 8th Ave above 14th Street, Manhattan
• • Northern Manhattan • South Bronx • Jamaica, Queens • Flatbush Ave, Brooklyn • St. George, Staten Island
• • Within the first 4 years, at least 4,550 Links will be installed, and every one of them in Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Queens will have gigabit speed.
• We will release deployment information to the public on a rolling basis and will announce all new locations in advance.

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