Kansas K20 Librarians Whitespace Pilot

The State Library of Kansas announces the establishment of the Kansas K20-Librarians Whitespace Pilot, initiated by the Kansas City K-20 Librarians Initiative and coordinated by the State Library, under the national Gigabit Libraries Network's Libraries Super-Wi-FI Pilot.

As with libraries in the national pilot, lead libraries for the Kansas pilot will conduct a four-month long test of TV Whitespace technology, delivering public library internet access to remote locations in the community using open and unlicensed radio spectrum.

While retaining the public library internet focus, this pilot will build and grow by leveraging the resources that all types of libraries have to share, starting with technical knowledge, insight, and understanding what users want and need.  Working together will find more concrete arenas for sharing.

Libraries are already discussing creative ideas for collaborating such as Wi-Fi to bookmobiles; colocation of equipment at non-public library sites (to take advantage of geography or topology); working together to maximize the value of surplus connectivity; networking with policy makers at local, regional and state levels to rethink how Wi-Fi access is built out; and exploring opportunities for negotiating group purchase of equipment and/or discounted pricing.

Lead libraries for the initial phase of the pilot will be

Kansas City, Kansas Public Library
Lawrence Public Library
Manhattan Public Library
Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library

"Broadband connectivity is important to all Kansas communities for economic development and to all Kansas residents for lifelong learning and professional development," said State Librarian Jo Budler.  "Librarians understand this and are pleased to be part of a pilot which may demonstrate an alternative for providing wireless connectivity to library users."

Interested in joining us?

For more information, contact Director of Statewide Services Jeff Hixon.

Kansas TV Whitespace diagram graphic smaller