The Region Ten community of Coomacka will now benefit from reliable cellular phone service and internet connectivity, as Digicel has commissioned one of the country’s highest towers in the community on Saturday.The newly commissioned tower in Coomacka, Region TenPublic Telecommunications Minister Cathy Hughes applauded the telephone company for the expansion, and adding that Digicel has become an important partner in taking Guyana a step forward to becoming ICT (information and communications technology) capable.The minister noted that Digicel did not merely seek to provide cellular phone service, and she urged the community to seize the opportunity by utilizing the services of reliable reception and internet connectivity for training and entrepreneurial services, to assist in the development of their community and Guyana as a whole.“Internet (connectivity) is an inducement to be used to surf the Web. I want to use it to find out what business opportunities may lie in store for you… To get creative with the fruits and vegetables that you grow in your communities… How you can sell your products online. It is interesting to know what we can do with information,” the minister posited as she recognised some services which can be advertised online.With that said, the minister announced that the Government was now ready to set up an ICT hub to service the community.“We will bring the computers here, we will make it available, we will provide the training that you will need,” she assured.Meanwhile, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Digicel, Gregory Dean, indicated the company is pleased to extend its services to a new location — something which was not done in a long time, as recent works have primarily included upgrading services in already existing locations.The project was executed as a means of killing two birds with one stone, it was explained, and the minister referred to connectivity issues faced in small neighbouring communities.“One of the reasons for that is (the height of the tower) to improve the links to those other communities, (and) also to serve those communities here… We did a drive this morning, and so far, way up to Three Friends and Marie Elizabeth have been having signal, and I’ve heard (that communities) up the river as well are having signal..” Dean said.The next few weeks will see improvements done in the Coomacka area (based on the results of the drive test) as well as other locations around the country, by switching to 3-G network. These upgrades are expected to be completed before the end of this year.Representative of the Coomacka community, Dexter Harding, expressed his gratitude to Digicel for making such an investment, which would not only service the community, but other neighbouring villages as well. According to Harding, this implementation is the fruit of successive connections with the service-providing company, which he considered a leap from the aerial, which offered poor services in the past. “Working along with Digicel, we were able to achieve the great opening of this tower here…this would change our lives forever” he said. He has recognized, from his tenure on the Regional Democratic Council (RDC), the communication struggles faced by the communities.Harding made reference to an extreme situation in Three Friends, where persons created “phone booths” using bottles and pieces of wood placed at strategic points where they were able to access cell phone service.Successive discussions with the service company proved effective, because now gone are the days of “phone booths”, thanks to Digicel, he declared.
LANCASTER – Projecting an enrollment increase of nearly 7,000 students in the next five years, Antelope Valley Union High School District trustees have hired an architecture firm to design the district’s ninth high school. The school, which could cost $120 million to $130 million, is planned for 65 acres in southeast Palmdale at Pearblosssom Highway, Avenue T-8 and 47th Street East. “We need to move ahead on site nine,” trustee Al Beattie said. “We are six months to a year behind schedule. If the projected enrollment keeps increasing like it is, we are behind right now.” The board at last Wednesday’s meeting approved hiring Glendora-based NTD Stichler to design the school. The board will hold a special meeting Nov. 22 to hear a design presentation by the firm. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week The cost of hiring the firm will be about $4.9 million, which will be paid with funds from a 2002 voter-approved high school district bond issue and state funds, a district staff report said. The school’s preliminary target opening date is summer 2010, and the building will be designed to hold between 2,500 and 3,000 students, the report said. To pay for construction of the school and another high school that will be in either southwest Palmdale or northwest Lancaster, the district is considering placing another bond measure on the November 2006 ballot. Like Eastside High School, the district’s latest campus under construction, this ninth high school will not have a stadium or a small gym. The school’s football games will probably be played at either Knight High School, where the district plans to construct a stadium, or Littlerock High School, officials said. “The Antelope Valley continues to show strong patterns of population growth demonstrating a need for additional school construction projects,” the report said. The design and construction of a comprehensive high school takes a minimum of five to six years from inception to occupancy by students, the report said. Karen Maeshiro, (661) 267-5744 [email protected] 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!