Bell Atlantic Deploys Fiber Optics, Electronics, Bringing Additional Advanced Technology, Services To Northeast Philadelphia

Bell Atlantic Deploys Fiber Optics,
Bringing Additional Advanced Technology,
To Northeast Philadelphia

Company Invests $540,000 to Expand, Upgrade
Local Telephone Network

August 9, 1999


Ells Edwards,

PHILADELPHIA -- Bell Atlantic has installed new fiber-optic cable and
associated electronic equipment in northeast Philadelphia as part of a
$540,000 project to upgrade the local telephone network and provide
additional broadband capability to its customers.

The new 216-fiber underground cable runs along Cottman Avenue, Castor
Avenue and Hoffnagle Street in the area of Bell Atlantic's Pilgrim
telephone office, located at Rising Sun and Cottman avenues in city's
Rhawnhurst section.

This new technology will allow Bell Atlantic to expand its ability to offer
advanced high-speed data services to nearby public schools and businesses
and provides additional reliability and survivability in the Bell Atlantic
network. Fiber-optic systems use hair-thin glass fibers and digital
technology to deliver high quality telephone service along with high-
capacity/high-speed voice and data transmission services.

"This project is the latest evidence that Bell Atlantic is meeting our
commitment to deliver a state-of-the-art telecommunications network
throughout Pennsylvania," said Daniel J. Whelan, president of Bell
Atlantic - Pennsylvania. "We are accelerating our construction
schedules to provide rural and urban customers with high-speed access to
the Internet, work-at-home capabilities, as well as a host of other
innovative advanced services."

Whelan said Bell Atlantic has made major strides in deploying advanced
technology in its network:

  • Annual spending on the Pennsylvania network nearly doubled
    from $539 million in 1995 to more than $961 million in 1998.

  • Miles of fiber-optic cable in the commonwealth increased by 66
    percent from 474,450 in 1995 to 786,106 at the end of 1998.

  • Percentage of digital call-routing switches has grown from 90.3
    percent in 1995 to 96 percent at the end of 1998.

  • Bell Atlantic Infospeedsm DSL was launched in Pennsylvania
    last fall. Infospeed DSL is a secure, high-speed, always-on
    Internet access services that enables consumers to connect to
    cyberspace at speeds up to 100 times faster than today's fastest
    analog modems.

"Bell Atlantic is keeping its promises to Pennsylvania,"
Whelan said. "We are building and enhancing a public
telecommunications network in Pennsylvania that is the finest in the world
and is a vital part of the commonwealth's economic infrastructure."

In addition to deploying the latest technology, Bell Atlantic has spent tens
of millions of dollars to open Pennsylvania's local telephone market to

"We have irreversibly opened our markets to competition,"
Whelan said. "We can't force the long distance giants or anyone else
to compete here, but anyone who genuinely wants to enter our markets can
do so."

Bell Atlantic is at the forefront of the new communications and
information industry. With 43 million telephone access lines and ten
million wireless customers worldwide, Bell Atlantic companies are
premier providers of advanced wireline voice and data services, market
leaders in wireless services and the world's largest publishers of directory
information. Bell Atlantic companies are also among the world's largest
investors in high-growth global communications markets, with operations
and investments in 23 countries.