Bell Atlantic's Network Investment in New Hampshire Yields Solid Results during 1999

Bell Atlantic's Network Investment in New
Yields Solid Results during 1999

More Than $116 Million Invested This Year;
Company Notes Other New Hampshire Milestones

Dec. 27, 1999


Erle Pierce,

Manchester, N. H. -- New Hampshire consumers and businesses are
served by one of the most advanced telecommunications networks in the
country, thanks to an aggressive network investment program Bell
Atlantic continued during 1999. The company spent $116.1 million
dollars to modernize, expand and upgrade the vast telecommunications
network that serves the Granite State.

"As the decade ends, we are proud of our role in New Hampshire
providing an advanced telecommunications network that will help our
state, its residents, businesses, schools and libraries to be successful in the
new millennium," said Bell Atlantic New Hampshire President and
CEO Mike Hickey.

The funds were used primarily to expand the company's fiber--optic
facilities, which already cover the entire state.

"The self--healing, fiber--optic rings we've installed enhance the
reliability of our network which is extremely important to all our
customers," Hickey said.

Bell Atlantic added nearly 10,000 miles of fiber--optic cable in New
Hampshire, bringing the state's overall fiber--optic network to about
125,000 miles -- or enough to encircle the Earth more than five times.
Fiber--optic systems use laser--generated light pulses and digital
technology to provide greater capacity, higher transmission speeds and
better quality for voice, video and data transmitted over the network.

The company's 120 call--routing centers throughout the state use the latest
digital technology systems.

In addition to deploying the latest technology, Bell Atlantic has spent
millions of dollars to open New Hampshire's local telephone market to
competition. Bell Atlantic is required to open local markets before it can
gain federal permission to sell long distance in a given state. In fact, New
Hampshire's 24 certified local telephone carriers now have access to 75%
of the telephone lines in Bell Atlantic's operating area in the state. On
Dec. 22 the Federal Communications Commission approved Bell
Atlantic's application to sell long distance in New York, making it the first
regional Bell company allowed to sell long distance in its home region.

Bell Atlantic in New Hampshire also helped advance free connections to
Internet service providers for the state's schools and libraries. "This
year we linked nearly 200 schools and libraries and began providing
capacity and super--computing speeds that permit innovative distance--
learning applications with broadcast quality," said Hickey.

Hickey noted other milestones the company achieved in New Hampshire
during 1999:

  • The company introduced National 4--1--1 directory assistance
    service in New Hampshire, offering New Hampshire callers a simple way
    to obtain accurate listings anywhere in the nation at affordable prices.
  • The Bell Atlantic Foundation provided a $150,000 grant to help
    bring stories of New Hampshire culture to The Mall in Washington for the
    successful Smithsonian Celebration this past July.
  • The company also sponsored the visit of "The Wall That
    Heals, The Traveling Vietnam Memorial" which was visited by
    more than 15,000 people in its three--day stay at Manchester's Veterans

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