Case Study: Moscone Center

The Moscone Center is San Francisco’s premier exhibition, conference facility, and showcase for the latest developments from Apple, Google, Oracle, Microsoft and other tech giants. Moscone entered into an exclusive, long-term agreement with InSite to design, install and operate a neutral host DAS that would substantially upgrade the quality of wireless signals throughout the facility’s buildings. The main Moscone North and South facility is approximately 1.2 million square feet, and is largely constructed underground. Moscone West is a free-standing facility of approximately 500,000 square feet, constructed above ground a block away. InSite was tasked with providing one common wireless infrastructure that would provide seamless wireless coverage to all buildings.

The System

InSite paid 100% of the costs to deploy the system, which enables all Bay Area wireless carriers to distribute their wireless signals over a common fiber optic backbone. Carriers install their transmission equipment in a common equipment room, where they connect to the system. The fiber backbone connects from the equipment room to 20 remote repeater locations inside the facility, which transmit and receive each carrier’s radio signals through a single-set of discreetly installed, passive antennas. InSite successfully launched the system in May 2001.

Sub Licenses

Within 14 months, InSite had fully leased the System, securing long-term lease agreements with Sprint PCS, Nextel Communications, AT&T Wireless, Cingular and Verizon Wireless. Over the term of each carrier’s lease, InSite receives a monthly rental rate, and Moscone receives a percentage of those rental revenues after deducting (a) system operating expenses and (b) a return of InSite’s capital costs to deploy the system.


InSite’s shared infrastructure enables carriers to integrate new technologies quickly to support the latest technology products and services without disrupting facility operations. InSite continues to act as Moscone’s single point of contact for managing the carriers and their varying technologies, thereby allowing facility management to focus on their core business. To date, the system has performed virtually problem-free. Moreover, InSite’s experience with the Moscone Center is a leading example of the nearly continuous technological upgrades to meet the constantly changing demands of the marketplace. Currently 4G LTE MIMO operates on three frequency bands. The latest round of capacity improvements has resulted in 18 sectors (equal to six cell sites) required by wireless carriers as the relentless growth of demand for data usage on smart phones, tablets, and other devices continues unabated.

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