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

Bell Atlantic Deploys Fiber Optics,
Bringing Additional Advanced Technology,
to Philadelphia

Company Invests $536,000 to Expand, Upgrade Local
Telephone Network

January 19, 2000


Ells Edwards,

Sharon Shaffer,

PHILADELPHIA -- Bell Atlantic is nearing completion of a
$536,000 fiber-optic project in the Ivy Ridge section of Philadelphia to
upgrade the local telephone network and provide additional broadband
capability to its customers.

During the project Bell Atlantic has installed about four miles of
underground fiber- optic cable and associated electronic equipment in the
area of Ridge Avenue and Martin Street to serve several public schools as
well as homes and business locations. Construction is expected to be
completed by the end of January. The fiber-optic cable also provides
additional reliability and survivability in the Bell Atlantic network. Fiber-
optic systems use hair-thin glass strands and digital technology to deliver
high quality telephone services along with high-capacity/high-speed voice
and date 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:

  • Investment in the Pennsylvania network totaled nearly $2 billion
    in 1998 and 1999.

  • Miles of fiber-optic cable in the commonwealth increased by 81
    percent from 474,450 in 1995 to more than 863,000 in 1999.

  • Percentage of digital call-routing switches will be 100 percent by
    the end of the year 2000, having grown from 90.3 percent in 1995
    to 98.5 percent in 1999.

  • Bell Atlantic Infospeedsm DSL was launched in Pennsylvania in
    October 1998.

    Infospeed DSL is a secure, high-speed, always-on Internet access service
    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 more than 43
million telephone access lines and more than 10 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.