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Kirkland Free Wireless

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The City of Kirkland provides free wireless service downtown, including Marina Park and Peter Kirk Park. In addition, Everest Park and Houghton Beach Park are now covered, via a generous grant from Google. The following FAQ is designed to help answer your most common questions about the service. Please send any feedback that you may have via email to wireless@kirklandwa.gov.

What is the coverage area for the project?
Marina Park, Peter Kirk Park, and most of the downtown core.

Wireless in the Park Coverage Map

Click Here to download a higher resolution of the coverage map (PDF)

How do I use the wireless network? 
Simply bring your wireless-enabled laptop, tablet, or phone, set your network id (SSID) to KirkWiFi for the downtown and GKWiFi for Everest and Houghton Beach Parks. In all cases you will be presented with a splash page as soon as you access a common browser, and as soon as you accept the simple terms on the splash page, you will have access to the Internet.  Kirkland Wireless is a free service. 

How secure is this network? 
This is a free and open network; it is not secure.  We don’t recommend its use for business transactions that need wireless encryption.  This is similar to most networks available in coffee shops or other locations that provide free or low-cost wireless service. 

Will the network reach into businesses downtown? 
That’s a tough question.  We designed it to provide access of the streets and benches, but any wireless network will penetrate into various buildings that it is around, depending on what natural interference like trees and walls exist. Since it is unsecured, we do not recommend that businesses choose to use this network to replace their regular business connectivity to the Internet.

How will the city support this network?  How do I get help if I have a problem connecting? 
The city is committed to keeping the network up and running and working well. Support is provided during working hours only.  We encourage users to email us with questions and problems at wireless@kirklandwa.gov

wireless in the park photoI’ve read about other cities like San Francisco and Philadelphia providing city-wide wireless connectivity.  Is the City planning to provide city-wide wireless access? 
Large networks that provide city-wide coverage are expensive. Kirkland is lucky to have a strong telecommunications business sector.  We believe in municipal networking where appropriate, but we also support the success of our commercial providers.

If I already operate a wireless network downtown, will this network interfere? 
We hope not.  The nature of this technology might require adjustments of our network.  Please contact us at wireless@kirklandwa.gov if you have questions or problems.

How fast is it?
Speed depends largely on how many people are connected and using the network at any given time.  The connectivity is shared by all wireless users and can become slower as more users connect and use the network.  For normal use like checking email and browsing the Internet, it should be pretty fast - typical pages like news or sports information should load in a few seconds.  There may also be some locations which are inside of our coverage area but are affected by trees or where signal is otherwise weakened or blocked

Information Technology
123 5th Avenue, Kirkland WA 98033

General Inquiries
T. 425.587.3050 | F. 425.587.3055