AT&T, MARTA, InSite Wireless Partner to Deliver Improved Mobile Internet to Rail Commuters

Staff Report From Metro Atlanta CEO

Thursday, May 31st, 2018

Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority riders now have access to faster mobile wireless speeds and better connections thanks to a new agreement between AT&T* and InSite Wireless Group, LLC (InSite Wireless).
AT&T is the first carrier to launch service on MARTA’s new Distributed Antenna System, a system designed, built, and operated by InSite Wireless to bring cell coverage to subterranean rail stations and tunnels. AT&T customers can now effortlessly tweet, snap, text and surf the web on their devices while riding the train in DAS-served areas.
“We’re excited to be working with InSite Wireless and AT&T to enhance our service offering,” said MARTA Deputy General Manager Rob Troup. “By using the latest technology to deliver the best possible connectivity, we can deliver a safer, more pleasurable rider experience.”
A DAS system uses many small antennas to distribute and boost capacity, which ultimately means customers on participating carriers enjoy a faster and more reliable experience while streaming video, using HD Voice and even video calling.
Project overview and progress

Currently, three rail stations—including Five Points, Peachtree Center and Dome/GWCC, as well as the tunnels connecting them-- are either completed or currently in service providing access for riders with AT&T service. In the coming months, additional stations and connecting tunnels are expected to be live, including Vine City, Ashby and Decatur.
Work is underway on the North/South transit line stations and InSite Wireless expects to complete the entire project by the end of 2018. Once complete, the service footprint will include 15 stations, 11 miles of tunnels, 170 remote amplifier locations, more than 390 antennas and over 100,000 feet of fiber hidden throughout the underground stations and tunnels. As a neutral-host system, the MARTA DAS is open to other wireless carriers to join.
“AT&T is proud of our collaboration with InSite Wireless and MARTA, which will provide enhanced wireless experiences for Atlanta residents and visitors as they travel our great city,” said AT&T Southeast president Bill Leahy. “When public and private sectors unite, working together for a common goal, these dynamic partnerships can create an environment that fosters investment and innovation, allowing our thousands of AT&T Atlanta employees to help be part of the solution to drive economic growth and mobility in their hometown.”
AT&T invested more than $2.8 billion in its Metro Atlanta wireless and wired networks during 2014-2016. These investments enhance reliability, coverage, speed and overall performance for residents and businesses.
MARTA’s new DAS is the latest for InSite Wireless, which also operates systems in venues including, office buildings, airports, sports stadiums and transit systems across the U.S.
“We are excited not only about the opportunity to partner with MARTA on this project, but also about giving the riders a better-quality experience,” said Todd Weller, SVP of Sales, InSite Wireless. “We’re pleased to have AT&T on board. And we look forward to other carriers joining.”