Expanded Middle Mile Connectivity to Improve Rural Broadband Access

BROOMFIELD, Colo., March 02, 2010 – Level 3 Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ: LVLT) today announced that the company has been awarded $13.7 million in federal grant funding from the National Telecommunications and Information Association (NTIA) under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Level 3 will commit an additional $4.2 million in matching funds to the NTIA grant for the expansion of rural broadband.

“High-speed Internet and telecommunications services have become a vital part of building businesses and communities,” said Sureel Choksi, chief marketing officer of Level 3. “Level 3 is excited to be part of the nationwide effort to improve broadband access for all Americans.”

Level 3’s nationwide network runs through many of the rural communities targeted for improved broadband across the United States. Level 3 will use the NTIA grant funding and its own capital to create dozens of new high-speed network access points or middle mile connections in rural areas across six states: California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Tennessee and Texas.

Each new access point on the Level 3 network will have the capabilities to provide local telephone, cable and wireless companies more efficient access to Internet, voice, data and video services with national and international reach. Direct access to the Level 3 network offers a diverse and competitive alternative to incumbent carriers with a greater range of services and network redundancy – often a requirement for the expansion of local businesses.

Original Release