DENVER, October 29, 1998 ? Qwest Communications (NASDAQ: QWST) today announced it has signed approximately $45 million in contracts with multiple companies for the sale of dark fiber. Under the terms of each agreement, Qwest will provide access to certain fiber routes along its nationwide network, giving customers increased reliability and greater flexibility in transmitting their data, video and voice communications.

The company also announced it has awarded a contract to construct and install conduit for an additional 140 route miles to ACSI Network Technologies Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of e.spire Communications, Inc. (Nasdaq:ESPI). The new routes will be situated in geographic regions where Qwest has recently expanded its customer base. These routes will help support Qwest?s previously announced OC-48 native Internet Protocol (IP) network ? the world?s first commercially available high speed network specifically designed to support high-end commercial customers.

"As Qwest nears completion of the construction of its nationwide advanced fiber optic network, several companies are purchasing dark fiber segments from Qwest because of the strategic advantages and capabilities of our network," said Dean Wandry, senior vice president of government markets and fiber sales for Qwest. "e.spire has the experience and knowledge in constructing fiber optic networks that we require, and we?re pleased e.spire will be assisting us with the additional network builds, which will further enhance our nationwide network backbone."

The Qwest Macro Capacity Fiber Network

Qwest?s planned domestic network will span more than 18,500 route miles and serve over 130 cities, which represent approximately 80 percent of the data and voice traffic originating in the United States. To date, approximately 9,100 miles of the Qwest Macro Capacity Fiber Network are activated, and construction has commenced on 17,955 miles. The entire U.S. network will be completed by the second quarter of 1999. Qwest?s transcontinental segment extends from Los Angeles to Sacramento and across to New York. Additionally, Qwest owns transatlantic submarine capacity linking the United States to Europe and will jointly own a transpacific submarine cable system connecting the U.S. to the Pacific Rim. Qwest is also extending its network 1,400 miles into Mexico with completion slated for late 1998.

The Qwest Macro Capacity Fiber network is designed with highly reliable and secure bi-directional, line switching OC-192 SONET ring architecture. Upon completion, the network will offer a self-healing system that provides the ultimate security and reliability by allowing instantaneous rerouting in the event of a fiber cut.

About Qwest

Qwest Communications International Inc. (NASDAQ: QWST) is a multimedia communications company and one of the fastest growing companies in America today. Headquartered in Denver, Colorado, Qwest has approximately 6,000 employees and over 80 sales offices worldwide. With its world-class data and multimedia network, marketing expertise, and customer care and billing systems, Qwest is delivering high-quality data, video and voice connectivity securely and reliably to customers around the world. Further information is available at www.qwest.net.


This release may contain forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. These statements may differ materially from actual future events or results. Readers are referred to the documents filed by Qwest with the SEC, specifically the most recent reports on Form 10-Q, which identify important risk factors that could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, including potential fluctuations in quarterly results, dependence on new product development, rapid technological and market change, failure to complete the network on schedule, volatility of stock price, financial risk management and future growth subject to risks.

The Qwest logo is a registered trademark of Qwest Communications International Inc. in the U.S. and certain other countries.



Contact Information

Qwest Media Contact


Tyler Gronbach


(303) 992-2155


tyler.gronbach@qwest.com