Last year, Oklahoma City launched the world's largest muni Wi-Fi mesh network (not residential use, just public safety and other muni uses). Shortly thereafter, they won an award for the public safety aspects of the network.
A GovPro story now suggests networks like this Oklahoma City network could be leading a renaissance for muni wireless networks:
For instance, three years ago, Oklahoma City launched a muni-wireless broadband network using equipment from Tropos Networks covering 555 square miles. Today it has been adopted as the primary network used by all city departments.
Mark Meier, Oklahoma City’s chief technology officer recently indicated that the city has derived approximately $10 million in value from its broadband network to date. "Some of our critical public safety applications required redundant wireless connectivity, but the cellular data cards have remained virtually unused and handle less than 1 percent of our traffic which has resulted in significant cost savings for the city," he says.