Starting this week, public wireless service is available in a new outdoor location in the southwest area of the UMass Amherst campus. Anyone with a wireless-ready device can connect to the unrestricted UMASS-OPEN network in Lot 11 near McGuirk Alumni Stadium.
The selection of Lot 11 as a new wireless hotspot was strategic and intentional. The Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) identified Lot 11 as a key location for COVID-19 response; it was designated as a potential Point of Distribution (PDO) and State Staging Area where supplies could be stored and distributed to the local communities in case of need. Wireless connectivity is critical in such locations to ensure rapid and effective coordination of emergency response operations.
Lot 11 can also serve a large-capacity COVID-19 drive-thru testing location and is a convenient drive-up internet site to support nearby residents in rural communities with limited internet options during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.