Verizon Investment in New Hampshire Communications Network Tops $145 Million This Year

MANCHESTER, N.H. - New Hampshire consumers and businesses are served by one of the most advanced telecommunications networks in the country, thanks to continued aggressive network investment by Verizon during 2001.

The company this year spent more than $145 million to modernize, expand, and upgrade its New Hampshire network.

The funds were used primarily to expand the company's fiber-optic facilities as well as equip call-routing centers with the most up-to-date software and hardware.

Verizon's 126 switching centers throughout the state already use digital technology systems. The company's network in New Hampshire is valued at close to $2 billion.

"Verizon's state-of-the-art network provides our New Hampshire customers with the benefits of the latest telecommunications applications and unsurpassed reliability," said
J. Michael Hickey, president of Verizon New Hampshire.

Nationwide, Verizon invests more than $11 billion annually in its wireline telecommunications network, which is one of the most advanced in the world and features an industry-leading 8.3 million miles of fiber-optic facilities.

In New Hampshire, Verizon added nearly 15,000 miles of fiber-optic cable this year. This brings Verizon New Hampshire's overall fiber-optic network to more than 170,000 miles or enough to circle the Earth more than six times. Fiber-optic systems use laser-generated light pulses and digital technology to provide greater capacity, diversity of routing, higher transmission speeds and better quality for voice, video and data transmitted over the network.

"Verizon's state-of-the-art telecommunications continues to position New Hampshire for future economic growth," Hickey said. "We are proud of our role in bringing the benefits of telecommunications to every corner of New Hampshire."

Long-Distance Filing Planned in Early 2002

Verizon has opened its network and systems in New Hampshire to competition by investing in advanced computer systems and providing space for competitor's equipment in Verizon's switching centers throughout the state. Competitors now have access to more than 75 percent of the state's telephone lines, and more than 60 companies are authorized to sell local phone service. Verizon is required to open its local markets before it can gain federal approval to sell long distance in a given state.

In July, Verizon asked the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission (NHPUC) to support Verizon's application to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for approval to offer long distance.

Since December 1999, Verizon has won approval to offer long-distance service in New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Pennsylvania. The result has been significant choice and savings for consumers in states where Verizon has been allowed to compete for long distance. Millions of them are getting lower prices and clear, surprise-free, long-distance calling plans from Verizon.

The FCC is currently considering the company's application to offer long distance in Rhode Island. State regulators there voted unanimously to support Verizon's bid. In early 2002, the company expects to file for federal approvals in New Hampshire, Vermont, and Maine.

"We look forward to offering savings similar to those enjoyed by our neighbors in Massachusetts," Hickey said.

Verizon Gives Back to the Community

Through Verizon Foundation, Verizon this year gave more than $600,000 in grants and matching contributions to 70 nonprofit programs throughout New Hampshire. In addition, Verizon employees volunteered thousands of hours to these programs.

"Verizon and its employees have a long tradition of giving in this state," Hickey said. "Our roots remain firmly planted in the diverse neighborhoods where we work and live, and our commitment to service is a vital part of the Verizon promise to all our customers."

    Other milestones the company achieved in New Hampshire during 2001:

  • Verizon Online expanded the availability of its DSL (digital subscriber line) high-speed Internet access service. This service is now available to more than 200,000 of Verizon's 800,000 access lines throughout the state. The company also introduced new options that allow customers to share one DSL connection among multiple computers in a home or office. With more than one million DSL-equipped lines in service nationwide, Verizon one of the leading providers of business and residential high-speed Internet access.

  • Verizon enhanced the reliability of Verizon's telecommunications network throughout the state by adding fiber-optic facilities, called SONET rings, that provide high-speed capacity and a self-healing feature that automatically reroutes phone calls and data in the event of a fiber cut.

  • J. Michael Hickey, president of Verizon New Hampshire, was named Business Leader of the Year by Business New Hampshire Magazine.

Verizon Communications

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.