Verizon Replaces Its Mount Vernon, Wash., Central Office Switching System With Next-Generation Packet-Switch Technology

MOUNT VERNON, Wash. - Verizon technicians have begun work to replace the company's central-office switching system here, utilizing advanced technology.

A new packet-switching system -- which uses the same type of technology that routes data through the Internet today -- will be brought on line in September. It will be located in a new building about two miles east of the old office. The equipment routes customer calls and provides other services, such as Caller ID. The new building will also provide space for the company to expand its DSL offering.

Consumers in the region served by the new equipment will not need to make any changes because the new system will provide the same services at the same prices. The new system, which replaces older technology called circuit switching, will also provide the same high level of network reliability and service quality as the existing switch while positioning the company to provide enhanced services to customers in the future.

"This new system is part of our ongoing effort to make sure we deploy the best technology to serve our customers today and in the future," said David S. Valdez, vice president, public policy and external affairs for Verizon's Northwest Region.

Last year, Verizon invested about $98 million in the network that serves its Washington customers.

Verizon's Mount Vernon central office currently serves some 45,000 local telephone access lines in Mount Vernon and several surrounding communities.

A Dow 30 company, Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services, with approximately $68 billion in annual revenues. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States. Verizon is also the largest directory publisher in the world, as measured by directory titles and circulation. Verizon's international presence includes wireline and wireless communications operations and investments, primarily in the Americas and Europe. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.