Mon Commission, Citynet assist with connectivity issues at Mylan Park

MORGANTOWN — On any given day, thousands of people find themselves at Mylan Park for a wide array of reasons. 

But as more and more people access the park, they’ve been having an increasingly difficult time accessing the Internet. 

“It’s just like when you go to the football stadium and there’s 5,000 people trying to get on their phones at the same time,” Mylan Park Foundation President Ron Justice explained to the Monongalia County Commission during a May work session. “That’s the sort of thing we’re dealing with.” 

Then Citynet stepped in and donated “a significant amount” of wireless equipment to Mylan Park from the now-defunct Alderson-Broaddus College campus.

“We replaced all their access points with a solution that will allow them to be able accommodate the peak connections they see when they have large numbers of people there,” Citynet Senior Vice President Craig Behr said.

On Wednesday, the county commission granted a $7,734.56 request from the Mylan Park Aquatic and Track Complex for the installation of an “advanced firewall” to help complete those improvements.

“When they upgraded all their wireless, it was determined the firewall that was installed there was not suitable to be able to accommodate the speed nor the capacity or number of connections when they have very large events, and they have some very large events that take place over there,” Behr said. “The firewall allows all those devices to get connected to the Internet. It bridges the connection, then it also protects that traffic on the network.”

While this new equipment will improve matters, it’s not the end of connectivity conversations regarding Mylan Park — particularly considering the KOA Campground expected to open next spring. 

The campground will include 145 full hookup RV sites among other amenities. 

“Connectivity and WiFi is going to continue to be a very challenging situation for Mylan Park because of the growth, exponentially, that is occurring,” Mylan Park Foundation member Mark Nesselroad previously said.

“With campgrounds right now, you don’t put [coaxial] cable in anymore because everybody has Internet television and people are working while they are playing. The WiFi signal must be commercial grade WiFi that you could be running your office out of while at the campground.” 

In other county news, the commission’s July 17 meeting has been canceled.