AT&T will wire Capitol Hill

AT&T Corp.'s government solutions group of McLean, Va., has announced plans to wire 14 government buildings on Capitol Hill to its local fiber-optic network.

AT&T is not yet providing service to customers in those buildings. It is part of an effort by the company to compete aggressively for government business now held by Verizon Communications Inc. of New York.

For the government, the new links could offer additional bandwidth and redundant network connections to help ensure continuity of operations in the event of a service disruption.

AT&T representatives have been talking with officials in the Senate, House of Representatives and the General Services Administration to secure authority to make the connections.

'There is a good deal of negotiation that needs to be done,' said Warren Thrasher, engineering and operations manager for AT&T's Mid-Atlantic region.

The move is made possible by AT&T's acquisition last fall of a 100-mile regional fiber network that serves the Capitol Hill area. Buildings are expected be linked by the end of the year to a self-healing Synchronous Optical Network ring with two nodes to the AT&T network. In most cases cable in the buildings will be linked to a switch capable of providing OC-48 services.

Buildings to be connected are the Capitol; the Russell, Hart and Dirksen Senate office buildings; the Cannon, Longworth and Rayburn House office buildings and the Ford House Annex; the Jefferson, Adams and Madison buildings of the Library of Congress; Postal Square; the Government Printing Office and the General Accounting Office.

About the Author

William Jackson is a Maryland-based freelance writer.

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