Verizon Launches Fiber-Optic Projects In Coeburn, Haysi

RICHMOND, Va. - Verizon Communications will spend over $530,000 over the next several months to upgrade its telecommunications network in the Coeburn and Haysi areas of southwest Virginia. This is part of a $900-million effort this year by Verizon to expand and upgrade its network in the state.

These network modernization projects will help Verizon meet customers' high-speed data communications needs. They also will provide additional reliability and survivability in the company's network.

"We have a state-of-the-art telecommunications network in Virginia, and we're committed to making it even better," said Robert Woltz, president of Verizon Virginia. "The fiber optics we'll be deploying in the months ahead will further strengthen our network
infrastructure, providing the high-speed pathways that data-intensive businesses want and need."

In the months ahead, Verizon will install high-speed fiber-optics and associated electronic equipment in three separate projects:

Haysi to Breaks Interstate Park -- Verizon is installing 15 miles of fiber optics from the Haysi call-switching center to Breaks Interstate Park at a cost of approximately $230,000. The project will replace aging copper facilities between the two points and improve telecommunications service in the park.

Coeburn to Riverview - Three miles of fiber optics will link Verizon's Coeburn switching center with Riverview at a cost of approximately $33,000.

Coeburn to Sandy Ridge -- Five miles of fiber optics will connect the Coeburn switching center to Sand Ridge. This project will replace existing copper facilities. The project is expected to cost approximately $275,000.

Fiber-optic systems use hair-thin glass fibers and digital technology to deliver high-quality telephone service, along with high-capacity, high-speed voice and data transmission services.

    Woltz said Verizon has made major strides in deploying advanced technology in its Virginia network:

  • Verizon has nearly a million miles of fiber optics in Virginia and more is installed each month.

  • Verizon's construction expenditures for 2001 will exceed $900 million, with most of the funds earmarked for technology deployment.

  • More than 99 percent of Verizon's switching centers are digital, providing increased reliability and quality.

In addition to deploying the latest technology in Virginia, Verizon has spent millions of dollars to open its local telephone markets in the state to competition.

"We have irreversibly opened our markets to competition," Woltz said. "To date, 186 companies have been certified by the state to compete against us, and we've helped pave the way for their entry."

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.