The City of Pryor and Google launched the community’s new, free public Wi-Fi network Saturday morning in downtown Pryor. The community launch marks the first free high-speed wireless internet initiative in Oklahoma. Congressman Markwayne Mullin, Mayor Jimmy Tramel and Google Oklahoma Data Center Operations Manager Mike Wooten joined in the festivities.
Google partnered with Pryor offering a $200,000 grant which will be used to operate a data center located in the nearby Mid-America Industrial Park.
“I’m extremely jealous,” said Mullin. “At home in Westville, we still have dial-up and by the time I leave here, (Pryor) will have wireless internet from one end of town to the next.”
He said this type of process doesn’t begin with Google deciding to come to a small town on their own.
“It takes the Chamber, the city council, the mayor and the community to get together and say, ‘We want to attract businesses to our town.’ People don’t realize that small towns in this part of America have an unbelieveable work ethic and opportunity to showcase what we have if we’re willing to step out of our comfort zone,” said Mullin. “What Pryor did by partnering with Mid-America Industrial Park and attracting companies such as Google, gives so much credibility to Pryor.”
Mullin said Pryor is paving the way for other communities to do something similar.
“Creating this type of infrastructure with Google will allow our kids to stay here and reinvest in the community.”
The free, public Wi-Fi network will span approximately 13 square blocks on North Mill Street in Pryor, from southeast First to Northeast First Street down to South Elliot Street.
“My goal is to eventually supply free wireless internet for the entire city,” said Mayor Tramel.