Councillors this week rejected a recommendation by officers not to install free public access wi-fi in Todd Mall, asking for more information.
The main reason to not do it seemed to be cost, but councillors were not given firm information about this.
There is already some wi-fi access in the mall provided by businesses, some of it free, some paid.
Councillor Geoff Booth said, with council spending $5m on the redevelopment of the mall “wi-fi should be there”. He said it should also be available throughout the Civic Centre. Visitors to council chambers should be able to download council business papers and reports, he said. (Council used to provide multiple paper copies of these in the public gallery and to media but is now trying to go “paperless”.)
Cr Chansey Paech said cost could be influenced by limiting downloads, without affecting access to internet, email and Skype. Having wi-fi would encourage more people into the mall, he said.
Cr Dave Douglas suggested council may be able to get some corporate help to provide the service.
Crs Steve Brown and Eli Melky expressed support for the provision of free wi-fi.
Mayor Damien Ryan suggested that council ask for Expressions of Interest from providers.