Central Offices – the World Trade Center – New York, NY

UPDATE: September 29th, 2012 – A Follow up video from AT&T describing the technological aftermath, click here to read and watch

In respect to September 11th, I am backdating this post on the 11th anniversary of the attacks.

There are some amazing junk on YouTube.  There is so many videos on YouTube related to telecommunications and telephony – in this case film from the good Ole Bell System.


In this very interesting (but so devastating at the same time) the Bell System had done a film presentation of the installation of telephone switches at then new World Trade Center in 1973. The film described the process of the construction, the installation of the various switching and carrier systems and at the end of the film the workers at the WTC in production state.

The equipment had changed, they eventually switched over to ESS styled switching and went to data and other earlier Internet connectivity services. There was data services for the upper levels of Twin Towers, since many of the Wall Street trading floors were located there, and the New York Stock Exchange’s primary/backup location was at the WTC complex.

If you are an American reader that’s older than 21, you may know what happened on September 11th, 2001, the day where Twin Towers and other complexes of the WTC collapsed. 3,000 or so lives were gone, and all the telco equipment went beyond toast.  The telco companies equipment vendors at the time worked 24 x/hours for the following week to reroute data and voice traffic and to rebuild a totally new network for the Lower Manhattan area.

Regardless, this is another interesting story about telecommunications.

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2 comments on “Central Offices – the World Trade Center – New York, NY

  1. In 2001, wasn’t most of the World Trade Center main network a Nortel Meridian SL-100? The police and command center were definitely Nortel as it was shown in the history channel documentary….

  2. Might had been but I have no idea.

    Remember SL-100 is a PBX, it be kinda twisted for them to switch from an ESS to a PBX. As you say police and command center, the NYC government at the time was predominately a citywide Nortel shop (now they have gone more and more evil to the Ci$co side thanks to the Bloomberg administration.)

    We are on the subject on *Central Offices* Read the comments on the YouTube link, it seems to favor AT&T from the recollections.
    Thx

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