What’s the news? Albany County’s first responders are getting a major boost in their wireless communications thanks to the FirstNet network expansion currently underway by AT&T. We’ve added new FirstNet purpose-built cell sites near the town and hamlet of Rensselaerville, Myosotis Lake, Rensselaerville Falls, Route 85 (Delaware Turnpike), the Edmund Niles Huyck Preserve & Biological Research Station, the Rensselaerville Institute, town and the hamlet of Westerlo, the Route 32 & 405 corridors, the hamlet of Greenville located within the Town of Greenville, the Greenville Elementary & High Schools, the Greenville Public Library, the Greenville Courthouse, the Greenville-Rainbow Airport, and the Route 32, 81 & 26 corridors. These new sites are giving first responders on FirstNet – America’s public safety network – access to always-on, 24-hours-a-day priority and preemption across voice and data.
In addition, we’ve added new cell sites to enhance the area’s 4G LTE coverage and help give residents and first responders faster, more reliable wireless service. Our investment will help customers get the most out of their mobile devices. The new cell sites serve the Town of Guilderland, the Village of Altamont, the hamlet of Westmere, the NYS Thruway to the east along the Exit 24 (I-87) and North Bethlehem.
Why is this important? We consider FirstNet the most important wireless network in the country because it serves our first responders. And unlike commercial networks, FirstNet provides real, dedicated mobile broadband when needed. To ensure AT&T and the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet Authority) are putting coverage and capacity where first responders need it most, the FirstNet build is guided by direct feedback from state and public safety officials. This helps ensure Empire State first responders connect to the critical information they need – every day and in every emergency.
What are the benefits to first responders? From 2017 to 2019, AT&T invested nearly $1.6 billion in its New York wireless and wired networks and we’re actively extending the reach of FirstNet to give agencies large and small the reliable, unthrottled connectivity and modern communications tools they need. These sites were constructed using Band 14 spectrum, as well as AT&T commercial spectrum. Band 14 is nationwide, high quality spectrum set aside by the government specifically for FirstNet. We look at Band 14 as public safety’s VIP lane. In an emergency, this band – or lane – can be cleared and locked just for FirstNet subscribers. That means only those on the FirstNet network will be able to access Band 14 spectrum, further elevating their connected experience and emergency response.
How does this help Albany County residents? This new infrastructure will also help improve the overall coverage experience for AT&T wireless customers in Albany County. Residents, visitors, and businesses can take advantage of the AT&T spectrum bands, as well as Band 14 when additional capacity is available.
What is FirstNet? FirstNet is the only nationwide, high-speed broadband communications platform dedicated to and purpose-built for America’s first responders and the extended public safety community. Shaped by the vision of Congress and the first responder community following the 9/11 terrorist attacks, FirstNet stands above commercial offerings. It is built with AT&T in public-private partnership with the First Responder Network Authority – an independent agency within the federal government. The FirstNet network provides public safety with truly dedicated coverage and capacity when they need it, unique benefits like always-on priority and preemption, and high-quality Band 14 spectrum. These advanced capabilities enable FirstNet to help fire, EMS, EMA, law enforcement, and 9-1-1 save lives and protect their communities.
What people are saying:
President, AT&T New York
“New York’s first responders deserve reliable coverage across the state to help them effectively and efficiently address incidents. And with FirstNet, that’s exactly what they’re getting. We have a responsibility unlike any other network provider, and couldn’t be more pleased to support the public safety mission by bringing Albany County’s first responders – as well as businesses and residents – greater access to the connectivity they need.”
CEO, FirstNet Authority
“FirstNet is a dedicated broadband platform for public safety, by public safety. We worked hand-in-hand with the New York public safety community to understand their needs for the network. And this new site is a prime example of how that input and feedback is becoming reality. We look forward to supporting New York’s first responders’ use of FirstNet to help them save lives and protect our communities.”
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