2019 Winner Profile

Department of Technology (City and County of San Francisco)

Project Description:
In the first phase of its project to eliminate the digital divide, the city's IT staffers provided free, high-capacity internet to low-income residents by leveraging existing municipal fiber resources, staff expertise, and private sector partnerships. The city-owned public housing consists of over 30 widely distributed locations, and houses over 100,000 residents, who mostly cannot afford paying for fast internet and hence have not been a priority to commercial service providers. Despite obstacles like installation challenges in old buildings and diverse housing architecture, the team connected over 1,500 low-income families with long-term sustainable internet access -- at no cost to users. The project's second phase is underway to connect the remaining units; this ultimately will result in a service benefit of approximately $400 million over 20 years.
Linda Gerull
London Breed
San Francisco, CA
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