As part of a $4 million federal grant distributed through the Economic Development Corporation, Far Rockaway is one of seven communities affected by Hurricane Sandy that are getting mesh Wi-Fi to stay online during storms.
As the owner of Jontue Discount Boutique, Pauline Gayle relies on Internet to run her business.
"To help customers sometimes they cant get out ya know and sometimes the weather is bad so what I do like if they're interested in an item I text them the picture," said Gayle.
During Hurricane Sandy she lost about six thousand dollars worth of business.
Like most on Mott Avenue, she had to close for nearly a month.
But now more than a dozen business owners in downtown Far Rockaway will be equipped with something called wireless mesh networks.
It's a network of routers that will keep them online in emergencies.
The idea came from a business in Red Hook that used it and was the only one to have power during Sandy.
"They will have wireless routers connected on their rooftops and they will have access to resilient internet," said Lara Croushore, Vice President of the NYC Economic Development Authority.
The routers on the roof will connect to another router in the store, providing Wi-Fi to the street as well.
The Rockaway Development and Revitalization Corporation hosted an event Thursday night where business owners learned about the network, and were trained to fix cables if they break on the fly.
The people training them were eight young adults, known as stewards, ages 18-24 who are learning about the electronics industry ten hours a week through a grant from the EDC.
It's also about community building as the same stewards that are showing these business owners how to build ethernet cables are the same people that will be installing the backup Wi-Fi.
"A lot of new faces here so I hope by end of night I'm able to meet everybody," said 21 year old Allan Bucknole who hopes to get a full-time job through the fellowship.
Installations begin this summer and finish in 2019.
Far Rockaway is one of seven communities affected by Sandy getting the mesh Wi-Fi.
It's funded by a four million dollar federal grant. The EDC's RISE (Resiliency Innovations for a Stronger Economy) program will distribute an additional 26 million dollars for ten other technology updates in the same communities.