Verizon's 2008 Network Expansion Projects in New York Topped $1.34 Billion in Expenditures

NEW YORK - Consumers and businesses in New York are reaping the benefits of Verizon's $1.34 billion 2008 network expansion and enhancement program in the state, as the company completes the program's wireline projects.

Since 1995, Verizon has spent more than $1 billion each year in the state to further build, maintain and improve the company's wireline network.

"Verizon is a major investor in the New York economy, and we demonstrated that again in 2008," said Andrés Irlando, Verizon senior vice president for the New York region.  "Our continuing investments pay off now and in the future for our customers in terms of advanced and reliable products and services, for our employees in terms of good jobs with good wage-and-benefit packages, and for the state in general, which benefits from a rock-solid communications network that enables businesses to thrive."

Verizon announced Wednesday (Feb. 25) that the following New York initiatives were completed in 2008:

  • Expanding the company's revolutionary FiOS TV service to more New York communities, bringing competition and choice for cable TV service.  In 2008, Verizon gained TV franchises in 51 additional municipalities, ending the year with franchise approvals in a total of 145 New York cities, towns and villages. Verizon is building its FiOS network - with Internet speeds of up to 50 megabits per second - deeper into communities where the services already exist, and will expand that network to many more communities by the end of 2009.

  • Launching FiOS TV service to two critical markets in the state in 2008 - New York City and western New York.  The service was launched in New York City in July to 108 neighborhoods across all five boroughs, and was continually expanded to reach more than a half-million households by the end of the year.  It was launched in western New York in September in six communities and 62,000 households, and then in three more communities in December, reaching an additional 17,000 homes.

  • Bringing Verizon's High Speed Internet service at 7 megabits per second to more than 2.2 million qualifying customers in parts of hundreds of communities across the state. The faster service now rivals traditional broadband service offered by cable companies, resulting in more competition and lower prices.

  • Significantly enhancing FiOS TV offerings by adding more than 135 new channels, including 79 more high-definition (HD) channels, to the company's FiOS TV lineup in New York.  As a result, FiOS TV now offers more than 500 total channels - featuring more than 100 HD channels in all of Verizon's New York markets, more HD than any local cable TV company, including Cablevision, Time Warner or Comcast.

"We are focused on building the most advanced telecommunications network in the region," said Irlando.  "A world-class telecommunications infrastructure, one built on the most modern technology available in the world today, is vital to the growth of small and medium-sized businesses in New York and to the state's economy.

"There is tremendous customer demand for our FiOS services," said Irlando. "FiOS TV customers rave about it and are telling their family and friends to get it.  It's a must-have.  We are trying to make it available to as many customers as we can as quickly as we can."

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), headquartered in New York, is a leader in delivering broadband and other wireline and wireless communication innovations to mass market, business, government and wholesale customers.  Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, serving more than 80 million customers nationwide.  Verizon's Wireline operations include Verizon Business, which delivers innovative and seamless business solutions to customers around the world, and Verizon Telecom, which brings customers the benefits of converged communications, information and entertainment services over the nation's most advanced fiber-optic network.  A Dow 30 company, Verizon employs a diverse workforce of nearly 224,000 and last year generated consolidated operating revenues of more than $97 billion.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com.