700 MHz Band & D-Block

By , August 16, 2011

The 700 MHz band includes the spectrum vacated by television stations as they converted to digital technology. This conversion was completed in 2009. While portions of the vacated TV spectrum have been clearly reserved for public safety, there is uncertainty in how some other portions will ultimately be allocated. The FCC’s most recent plan for 700 MHz spectrum was released in 2007. Pending legislation suggests there may be further shifts in how some portions of this band may be used, specifically, the 10 MHz of 700 MHz spectrum that is referred to as the “D-Block”.

Some public transit agencies have developed communications systems that use 700 MHz spectrum. One of these agencies is King County Metro, which provides service in Seattle, Washington and the surrounding area. Given its vested interest in the 700 MHz band, King County Metro commissioned an analysis of the policy issues surrounding this band.

King County Metro and the report’s authors have graciously agreed to allow us to post their report, in hopes that others may benefit from the findings.

    Discussion of 700 MHz Spectrum Policy Issues for Public Safety in King County:
    Executive Summary, Full Report

Of course, readers should know that neither King County, the authors, or the Joint Council make any warranty and assume no liability with respect to use of this report, and the report should not be assumed to represent the views of King County or the Joint Council.

The primary objective of the Joint Council is to facilitate information sharing. We welcome submissions from other transit agencies for postings of sources that have been helpful to their assessments of wireless communications.