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U S WEST DOES A MEGA-PHONE JOB AT MINNESOTA'S MALL OF AMERICA

 U S WEST DOES A MEGA-PHONE JOB AT MINNESOTA'S MALL OF AMERICA
 BLOOMINGTON, Minn., Aug. 10 /PR Newswire/ -- In terms of telecommunications: How ... big ... is it?
 The Mall of America is so big, says U S WEST Communications, that:
 -- Some 50 employees have been working for two years to bring state- of-the-art systems and services to the $625-million-mall, the nation's largest indoor retail-entertainment complex. The mall opens tomorrow in this third-largest Minnesota city just south of Minneapolis-St Paul.
 -- U S WEST Communications, "Official Communications Supplier" to the mall, placed some 45 miles of cable to give tenants, visitors and mall management access to the latest voice, data, and video services. An extensive network now serves 400 stores, mall management offices, 30 restaurants, 14 theaters, eight nightclubs and Camp Snoopy, the amusement park focal point.
 -- To link eight widespread "Guest Service Centers," U S WEST ran 144 strands of optical fiber to a central mainframe computer to provide an expendable Local Area Network (LAN). This is part of an extensive "fiber backbone" serving the mall.
 -- At the "Guest Service Centers" at each entrance, mall management rents pagers and cellular phones, along with wheel chairs and child strollers, all at nominal cost as a convenience to guests. Distances are so great, and activities so varied, that separated family members need to stay in touch. The phones and pagers are provided to the mall by U S WEST Cellular and U S WEST Paging, which are not part of U S WEST Communications.
 -- Some 200 pay phones are in open public and in-store retail and entertainment locations. Included are special phones with volume controls, Teletype Devices for the Deaf (TDDs) and wheelchair accessibility.
 -- Some 4,200 cable pairs terminate at multiple locations, which increased beyond projections as estimated initial mall occupancy jumped form 50 to 70 percent.
 -- Two central offices serve the mall -- one on nearby Cedar Avenue for analog services and another in Downtown Minneapolis, linked by optical fiber for digital services.
 -- U S WEST set up an on-site business office during construction, so that mall occupants could try equipment and services, and place orders without going through traditional channels.
 The heart of the communications network is a 450-line Custom Centron(R) system with universal call-distribution and an Octel voice mail service. The central office-based, software-controlled system allows for communications features to be added, deleted or changed without changing hardware or connections in the mall.
 The mall is equipped for ISDN -- the Integrated Services Digital Network for separately or simultaneously moving voice, data, video and facsimile over the local public switched network. U S WEST installed 150 AT&T ISDN and 250 Northern Telecom Unity 250 Analog phones.
 The U S WEST communications network for the Mall of America links a vast array of facilities in a structure so immense it could contain 88 football fields within a framework that has six times more steel than the Eiffel Tower in Paris, and has its own Zip Code.
 U S WEST, Inc., is a $28 billion diversified communications company. Its major subsidiary, U S WEST Communications, provides telecommunications services to 25 million customers in 14 western states.
 -0- 8/10/92
 /CONTACT: Tom Lee, U S WEST Communications, 612-663-6760 or Bennie Cohen, U S WEST Communications, 612-663-5992/ CO: U S WEST Communications ST: Minnesota IN: TLS SU:


RW-KH -- MN015 -- 8670 08/10/92 16:34 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Aug 10, 1992
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