Verizon Deploys Fiber Optics, Electronics, Bringing Additional Advanced Technology, Services to Connellsville Area

CONNELLSVILE, Pa. - Verizon Communications is investing more than $730,000 to modernize the local telecommunications network and provide additional broadband capability to its customers in the Connellsville area of Fayette County.

The company will install new fiber-optic and copper cable and associated electronic equipment along the Route 119 business corridor in Connellsville. This area includes the Fayette County Airport, which is targeted as a prime area of future business development. Construction is expected to be completed by mid-year, 2001.

"This project is the latest evidence that Verizon is meeting its commitment to deliver a state-of-the-art telecommunications network throughout Pennsylvania," said Daniel J. Whelan, president of Verizon 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 Verizon has made major strides in deploying advanced technology in its network:

  • Investment in Verizon's former Bell Atlantic-Pennsylvania network totaled nearly $2 billion in 1998 and 1999.
  • Miles of fiber-optic cable in the former Bell Atlantic-Pennsylvania network increased by 92 percent from 474,450 in 1995 to more than 911,000 in 1999.
  • Percentage of digital call-routing switches in the former Bell Atlantic-Pennsylvania network 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.
  • The former Bell Atlantic's Infospeedsm DSL was launched in Pennsylvania in October 1998. Infospeed DSL is a high-speed connection to the Internet that enables users to connect to cyberspace at speeds up to 100 times faster than today's fastest analog modems.

"Verizon 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, Verizon has spent tens of millions of dollars to open Pennsylvania's local telephone market to competition.

"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."

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ), formed by the merger of Bell Atlantic and GTE, is one of the world's leading providers of communications services. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States, with 101 million access lines and 26 million wireless customers. A Fortune 10 company with more than 260,000 employees and approximately $60 billion in 1999 revenues, Verizon's global presence extends to 40 countries in the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Pacific. For more information on Verizon, visit www.verizon.com.