Verizon Deploys New Switch Technology To Better Serve West Chester Customers

WEST CHESTER -- Verizon Communications is investing more than $2 million to modernize its local telecommunications network and provide additional telephone lines to its customers in the West Chester area of Chester County.

Verizon is expanding the capacity of its digital switch, a state-of-the-art computer that routes calls to their destinations in the West Chester area. This upgrade will accommodate future growth and increase the capacity and reliability of the Verizon network.

Verizon's West Chester switching center serves about 70,000 phone lines. The switch upgrade will add capacity for more than 7,000 additional phone lines in the facility. The company expects to complete this work in December.

"This project underscores Verizon's commitment to build and maintain a state-of-the-art telecommunications network throughout Pennsylvania," said Daniel J. Whelan, president of Verizon Pennsylvania. "We continue to upgrade our infrastructure 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."

Verizon will invest nearly $1 billion in Pennsylvania's telecommunications network in 2001, bringing the total in the last three years to almost $3 billion.

"We are building an advanced telecommunications network that will stimulate job and income growth and will make Pennsylvania one of the most attractive locations for corporations and individuals," Whelan said.

In addition to deploying the latest technology, Verizon recently launched an array of long-distance calling plans for Pennsylvania consumers and businesses. In September, Verizon received federal approval to compete in Pennsylvania's long-distance market. The company now offers Pennsylvanians a complete range of telecommunications services, including local, regional and long-distance calling, data, high-speed Internet and wireless services.

"The level of telecom competition in Pennsylvania today is unprecedented," said Whelan. "Verizon's entry into the long-distance market will accelerate that competition. Consumers will be the winners, because they will see real savings in their pockets, just as consumers in other states have benefited when full competition became a fact of life."

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) 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 128.5 million access line equivalents and 28.7 million wireless customers. Verizon is also the largest directory publisher in the world. A Fortune 10 company with 256,000 employees and approximately $65 billion in annual revenues, Verizon's global presence extends to more than 40 countries in the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Pacific. For more information on Verizon, visit www.verizon.com.