RACINE — A demonstration of U.S. Cellular’s 5G network in Racine left Walden III students speechless.
Racine is one of the first Wisconsin cities with 5G capabilities through a partnership with U.S. Cellular, though it will not be widely available until March 6.
U.S. Cellular is also launching 5G in Green Bay, Madison, Milwaukee, Oshkosh and other smaller cities.
The announcement at the Cesar Chavez Center, 2221 Douglas Ave., on Wednesday included a demonstration, where Mayor Cory Mason, on a 5G-enabled phone, video called a group of students at Walden III Middle and High School.
“So tell me what you’re learning about with STEM today?” Mason asked the group.
“Anybody?” Still no response. “Don’t everybody raise their hands at once,” Mason joked. The group did wave to show they had heard Mason but no amount of technology can improve communication with teenagers.
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“Well you’re part of history,” Mason said to wrap up the call. “This is the first 5G call in the City of Racine. Thrilled to do that with the Walden students.”
5G a ‘foundational step’
Mason called the availability of 5G, “the foundational first step” for implementing smart city technologies.
“If we want to go to the next level around mobility, it requires 5G technology. If we want to get the next level of security and safety opportunities that exist with smart cities you need 5G to be able to do that. If you want to do the work that we want to do around sustainability and reducing our carbon footprint you need 5G technology to do that,” Mason said.
Details about how specifically smart cities technologies will be used to administer city services still haven’t been worked out. But another advantage of have 5G available in Racine is it will give the city a competitive edge for new high-tech industries, such as the internet of things, which requires high-speed interconnection.
“It gives us a competitive edge,” said Mason. “If you want to innovate and do that new technology, as a factor in this industry, this is a great place to be.”
But a key issue, according to Mason, is ensuring widespread access, which is why the city plans to have high-speed internet available at city community centers in time for summer sessions this year.
They are also in talks with the Racine Police Department about making wireless high-speed internet available at COP houses as well.
“We need to be intentional about this. If we are intentional about it smart cities should help close some of the community’s inequities. If we’re not mindful about it, it could broaden some of them,” said Mason. “So we want to make sure when this new technology comes to town that we’re making it available broadly, so everyone can enjoy the success of this new technology.”
Last year, Racine was the smallest city to win the Smart Cities Readiness Challenge from the Smart Cities Council, which granted access to expertise and financing for smart technology projects.
Last September, the city hosted Smart September events which explored what smart technology could mean for the community, how it could be implemented and celebrating Racine’s legacy of innovation.
Things to do in and around Racine County
Events coming up this weekend and in the coming weeks in and around Racine County.
RACINE — Over Our Head Players presents the 2023 Snowdance Ten Minute Comedy Festival for the 19th year Jan. 27-Feb. 26 at the Sixth Street Th…
RACINE — In a chaotic beginning to anything but wedded bliss, “Perfect Wedding” is a full of a series of farcical change reactions at the Raci…
STURTEVANT — The 11th annual Racine Bridal Showcase will take place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 5, at Fountain Banquet Hall, 8505 Durand Ave.
You want to go out and listen to some live music, but you don’t like a bar atmosphere. I’m sure there are many of you who feel like you wouldn…
RACINE — “Vignettes: Concentrated Views of RAM’s Collection” will be on exhibit Feb. 1-Aug. 19 at the Racine Art Museum, 441 Main St.
Of course, snow is in short supply in our state, as is cold weather, so always check in advance before heading to any activities:
CALEDONIA — River Bend Nature Center, 3600 N. Green Bay Road, will host its annual Chili Winter Evening and Candlelight Trail from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, Jan. 27.
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WAUKEGAN — The Broadway play "Lombardi," about the legendary Green Bay Packers coach, will be performed Feb. 3-4 at the Genesee Theatre in Downtown Waukegan, Ill.
STURTEVANT — The Racine Founders Rotary Club Foundation presents its annual Vegas Night fundraiser at 7 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 11, at Fountain Ba…
RACINE — With “back to normal” on the horizon, the Racine Theatre Guild announced the plays and musicals that will make up its 2022–2023 season.
RACINE — With twists on traditions, new compositions and classics too, the Jean’s Jazz Series returns to the Racine Theatre Guild, 2519 Northw…
There’s nothing quite like the return of a beloved auteur to get the cinephile’s juices flowing. Or the next installment in one of the century’s biggest franchises. Or paparazzi photos of Barbie and Ken.
SOMERS — The University of Wisconsin-Parkside Mathis Gallery will host "Medusa and Midas," a new work by Melissa Scherrer Paré and Mike Paré J…
RACINE — The Racine Zoo, 2131 N. Main St., announced the lineup for its upcoming 36th annual Animal Crackers Concert Series.
YORKVILLE — Apple Holler, 5006 S. Sylvania Ave., offers reservations for private horse-drawn sleigh rides.
KENOSHA — Several public events this month at Carthage College center on a newly acquired collection of professional artwork depicting scenes …
RACINE — Spectrum Gallery, located in the east building of the DeKoven Center, 2000 Wisconsin Ave., is featuring 33 artists in the “Fine Arts …
If it's fall, it must be time for another season of the University of Wisconsin-Parkside's Foreign Film Series.
STURTEVANT — Marcus Theatres announces the return of a family favorite, the Winter Kids Dream Film Series.
RACINE — The Charles A. Wustum Museum of Fine Arts, a campus of the Racine Art Museum at 2519 Northwestern Ave., is hosting “Watercolor Wiscon…
RACINE — Open through Feb. 11 at Racine Art Museum, 441 Main St., "RAM Showcase: Russell T. Gordon and James Tanner" spotlights and contrasts …
RACINE — The U.S. Congress declared Racine to be the Drum and Bugle Corps Capital of the World in 1967.
RACINE — “RAM Showcase: Focus on Glass” features glass artwork made by four contemporary artists of color — José Chardiet, Etsuko Nishi, Acqua…
RACINE — “Quiet Elegance: The Jewelry of Eleanor Moty” showcases more than 35 works created throughout the career of the titular metalsmith — …
NewsVu: Things to do in and around Racine County
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