The Dalles, Oregon issues RFP for municipal wireless network

The Dalles, Oregon has posted an RFP for a pilot mesh network to be expanded to a citywide Wi-Fi network. The network will be used for public access as well as municipal applications. The Dalles, Oregon’s Request for Proposals (RFP) provides vendors with information to prepare and submit a response for consideration by the QualityLife Intergovernmental Agency (QLife) regarding the design, implementation and operation of a pilot broadband wireless mesh network (Phase One) for residents, businesses, visitors and government agencies, including free Internet access for the public for specified durations. Phase One (the pilot network infrastructure) is to be implemented within 120 days from contract execution.

The selected vendor will design, implement and operate the equipment and systems required to deliver the pilot broadband wireless mesh network.

QLife is an Intergovernmental Agency organized under ORS 190 by the City of The Dalles (City) and Wasco County (County). In 2003, a 17 mile fiber optic loop was constructed around the City.

The City’s 2000 census population was 12,175. The City serves a trading area of about 70,000 persons in Washington and Oregon. Principal economic activities are agriculture, and tourism, along with health care, government, and retail services.

Download the RFP from here.


  1. Here’s another small agency that thinks a private company ill cough up the cash for a city wide network in return for access to “mounting assets”, except they don’t own any assets, they aren’t helping get the mounting rights, they don’t commit to any specific usage or funding, and they want free access for everyone.

    If you’re San Francisco and Earthlink’s shareholders are willing to make a bet, fine. I am utterly perplexed that small cities think someone else will pay for their whole network without additional participation, or guarantees from the city.

    Someone give me some feedback. I’ve seen several of these RFPs, and most get no bids, or bids from companies that probably can’t deliver. The bidding criteria isn’t even defined. Who are these people???

  2. Mike Siok says

    Big and Small. All the cities which are looking for a free solution are not going to get one. The business cases just don’t work without the city owning up to some level of committment beyond just access to their resources.

    Its is hard to fathom how the Earthlink shareholders can continue to take these ‘build it and they will come bets’. Yes, the contracts are good news but show me a successful business case along with a successful deployment. Neither exist or they are simply unbelievable. Success in these areas have been nothing short of abysmal.

    CWC – Colorado Wireless Communities has this same dream.

    Unfortunately, I believe the real culprit are the consulting firms like Civitium who are only telling the cities what they want to hear not what’s realistic. What is required is more responsible consulting firms who don’t just take the tax payers money and run.

    Time will tell but on these models we’re going to see a whole lot of money spent and no return… Who’s going to run these networks once the builder go bankrupt for lack of sustainable business models?