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Verizon Breaking Ground On LTE Lab

The center will help Verizon's technology partners develop innovative Long Term Evolution wireless products.
Verizon Communications is scheduled to conduct groundbreaking ceremonies Thursday on a research lab centered on its Long Term Evolution technology that will be deployed in 25 to 30 cities this year.

The Verizon Technology Innovation Center will eventually house more than 300 scientists and researchers, many of whom are already at work on the new technology. Verizon's LTE network has been tested for several months in the Boston and Seattle regions.

The firm's Verizon Wireless unit, which is 45% owned by Vodafone Group, has already launched seminars and meetings for developers who plan to design products and services for use on the 700-MHz spectrum network the wireless unit is establishing.

The new building will be combined with existing facilities at Verizon's site in Waltham, Mass., in suburban Boston.

"Major construction will begin in earnest in late spring and within a year's time we hope to be able to open the doors," said a Verizon spokesman. "There will be some people brought in from other Verizon locations around the country."

Verizon has said the chief purpose of the center will be to help technology partners quickly develop and bring to market innovative LTE products and services.

The first LTE network was launched in December 2009 in Oslo and Stockholm.

Pre-paid mobile service provider MetroPCS has said it also plans to deploy LTE, which offers up to 10 times the speed of most existing 3G service.