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Connecting Cleveland

Digital C has been working to Connect the Unconnected in a city where more than 30 per cent of residents have no Internet access

Technical architecture of the Cleveland initiative is
Technical architecture of the Cleveland initiative is

Siklu, the market leader in millimeter wave radios, has provided a network of gigabit millimeter wave radios to the US city of Cleveland’s Connect the Unconnected initiative. The programme is aimed at bridging the digital divide and 156 housing units and a homeless shelter have been connected with Siklu radios, each receiving broadband speeds.


Civic organisation Digital C has been working to Connect the Unconnected" in the city where more than 30 per cent of residents have no access to the Internet. The programme has brought broadband connections to approximately 800 residents of Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority high rise communities, as well as residents of the Lutheran Metropolitan Ministries Men’s Shelter and students at Stepstone Academy.


Recipients of the connectivity will also be provided with the opportunity to complete a basic digital literacy training course, teaching the fundamentals of computer and internet use, after which they will receive a refurbished computer to utilise at home.

The main challenge in connecting public housing buildings like the Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority is the prohibitive cost of laying fibre between buildings, which is why Digital C turned to Siklu.


The technology company was able to provide fibre-like gigabit capacity over the air, connecting several CMHA buildings and a homeless shelter from a nearby fibre termination unit. Between 1-3 gigabit wireless antennas per building are providing each resident with a high-speed broadband connection.


"We believe in Digital C’s mission to use technology for community impact," says Izik Kirshenbaum, Siklu president. “We’re excited to see how millimeter wave technology providing broadband speeds will impact resident’s lives."


"The technical architecture of the Cleveland Connect the Unconnected programme is scalable and replicable," said Lev Gonick, chief executive of Digital C. "It’s a good example of using IT to advance the quality of life in a community and serve as a reference architecture for others."


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