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Help with providing reliable Wi-Fi for church campus that has a barely working environment


Help with providing reliable Wi-Fi for church campus that has a barely working environment

Project summary


I am working with my church to upgrade their painfully slow 25 Mbps ISP service to T-Mobile small business. I currently have T-Mobile's home service at my house and consistently connect to 5G N41 at an average 350+ Mbps. I took my Sagemcom gateway to the church office and the service worked as expected with an even better 400+ Mbps speed. Cellmapper.net shows a T-Mobile 5g tower directly across the street from the property so that kind of makes sense.


1. Scenario: Provide reliable Wi-Fi for church campus
2. Traffic Demands:
a) Basic demands: Surf the internet, send emails, play music, etc.
b) High-traffic demands: Facebook livestream of Sunday service, Voice meetings, HD video, online collaboration tools,



As far as the property itself, we have 3 primary buildings in a triangle configuration. One small business office (approx 1500 sq ft) on the left side of the property where the ISP connection is located. The main church building (approx 9k sq ft) is in the middle of the property about 125 ft away from the office. The gym (approx 12k sq ft) is on the back side of the property about 150 ft away from the office. The main issue we are having is getting any Wi-Fi connectivity into the gym. There is no ethernet connectivity in the gym because the interior walls are thick steel with which we've been unsuccessful drilling through. The other issue is the environment has just been thrown together haphazardly with no real continuity or planning a proper infrastructure. We have small home routers sitting in odd places and no one knows the logins to the web GUI or even what they are actually doing.

1. Office
35.190590, -89.837631
Approx. total area: 1500 sq ft
Construction: Vinyl siding with interior drywall
AT&T wireless gateway for 25 Mbps isp in middle office.
Considering moving to T-Mobile Small Biz 5G ISP - 300-400 Mbps
One Netgear Gs305p POE switch in middle office
5 offices all connected via CAT 5e(?) though the Netgear switch.

2. Sanctuary
35.190392, -89.837218
Distance from office to sanctuary: 125 ft
Approx. total area: 9000 sq ft
Construction: Cinder block
One Belkin F5D9230-4 MIMO router upstairs behind baptismal.
One Netgear Gs305p POE switch in control room
One Ubiquiti UAP-AC-Pro access point in control room
Several ethernet drops available, I believe.

3. Gym
35.190901, -89.837340
Distance from office to middle of gym: 150 ft
Approx. total area: 12,000 sq ft
Construction: Outer walls are cinder blocks, Inner walls are thick steel, Roof is standard steel with a foam insulation covering.
Unable to penetrate thick steel firewall so no ethernet or WiFi currently available. Would roof access work for an outdoor AP? Then I guess we'd use indoor APs to provide the interior connectivity?

Number of clients
Wireless clients max of about 100+ on Sundays. Maybe 25-50 during the week.
We also have 8 IP based cameras and 2 VOIP office phones.


Please note that as a small church congregation, we do not have the funds for a full enterprise level network design and the hardware that goes along with one. We just need the network to be reliable and work properly!

Any suggestions or comments would be MOST appreciated!

Message 1 of 2

Re: Help with providing reliable Wi-Fi for church campus that has a barely working environment

To create a good working Wi-Fi environment there is no other way than building a network, connecting all three buildings with copper Ethernet or even better fiber. Scratch any ideas about making a wireless backhaul - it won't make anybody happy. Bring wireless AP as near and as dense as possible to the rooms there you need wireless coverage.


This does not require enterprise equipment or expensive managed switches.


I tend to deploy Netgear Insight Managed switches and AP for each building.

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