Bell Atlantic's Network Investment in New Jersey
Yields Solid Results during 1999
$1 Billion Invested This Year Company Notes Other New
Dec. 23, 1999
NEWARK, N.J. -- New Jersey 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 about $1 billion to modernize, expand and upgrade the vast
telecommunications network and systems that serve the Garden State.
"As this decade ends, we've delivered on our promise to equip New Jersey
with an advanced telecommunications network that will help the state, its
businesses, schools, libraries and consumers be successful in the new
Millennium," said Bell Atlantic New Jersey President and CEO William
The funds were used primarily to expand the company's fiber-optic facilities and
to continue adding the latest technology to Bell Atlantic's 214 call-routing centers
throughout the state.
"During the year, we achieved an important milestone when we converted
all of our New Jersey call-routing centers to the latest digital technology systems,
removing the last analog systems," Freeman said. "With 100-percent
deployment of this technology, customers are receiving higher quality, more
reliable local telephone service. They also have access to more services which
are available only through digital call-switching technology."
Bell Atlantic added about 100,000 miles of fiber-optic cable in New Jersey,
bringing the state's overall fiber-optic network to more than 1.2 million miles - or
enough to circle the Earth 48 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
Bell Atlantic's commitment to deploy an advanced telecommunications
infrastructure in New Jersey is called Opportunity New Jersey. "We are
proud of meeting and, in many cases exceeding our promise as acknowledged by
state regulators." Freeman said. "Our results, in partnership with the
public sector, have helped New Jersey gain the enviable reputation of a
technologically rich state."
In addition to deploying the latest technology, Bell Atlantic has spent tens of
millions of dollars to open New Jersey'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. 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.
In New Jersey 53 carriers are certified to provide local telecommunications
services and 13 more have filed for regulatory approval. These companies are
experiencing explosive growth. This year Bell Atlantic exchanged 3.6 billion
minutes of local traffic with them, a four-fold increase over 1998.
Freeman noted other milestones the company achieved in New Jersey during
- Expanded availability of Bell Atlantic's high-speed Internet access
service, InfospeedSM DSL, to additional communities in Northern New
Jersey. The company also began deploying the service in parts of
South Jersey. Infospeed DSL provides an always-on connection to the
Internet with no dialing, no busy signals and no waiting.
- Introduced National 4-1-1 directory assistance service in New Jersey,
offering New Jersey callers a simple way to obtain accurate listings
anywhere in the nation at affordable prices.
- Provided $19 million more in equipment and discounted services to
500 schools and libraries under a program known as Access New
Jersey (ANJ) so they could connect to the company's high-speed data
- Partnered with FVC.com to deliver broadband video conferencing
services to schools over the statewide ANJ network. In deploying the
broadband network, the two companies are stepping up to Gov.
Christine Todd Whitman's promise to "deliver high-speed
access to every classroom in New Jersey by 2002." ANJ will
use FVC.COM video networking equipment to deliver live and stored
video resources to schools throughout the state, reaching more than
600,000 students by the end of this year.
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.