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Nextel Signs Agreement with Las Vegas Monorail for Convention Center Station and Train

RESTON, Va. & LAS VEGAS, Nov 18, 2003 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Wireless Leader Unveils Monorail Train and Plans to Showcase Innovative Technology In One-of-a-kind Branding Venue

Nextel Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ:NXTL) announced today it has signed an agreement with the Las Vegas Monorail Company to expand the Las Vegas Convention Center Station into an immersive, themed environment highlighting the industry's latest digital wireless communications solutions. The station will give Nextel an unprecedented brand presence, reaching millions of business travelers who visit Las Vegas each year. In addition to the agreement, Nextel announced its plans to brand-image a four-car monorail train. Nextel's 15,000-square-foot venue will be housed in the largest station on Las Vegas' new $650-million, privately funded monorail system. The transfer point for the Las Vegas Convention Center, which hosts the largest percentage of Tradeshow Week's top 200 conventions, is expected to be a destination in-and-of itself, showcasing Nextel's innovative products and services to the 35 million people who visit Las Vegas each year.

"Nextel develops and delivers innovative communication solutions for business customers, and we're taking these solutions to an extraordinary level with our presence on the Las Vegas Monorail," said Mark Schweitzer, senior vice president of marketing at Nextel. "This Station gives customers and prospects a chance to experience the Nextel brand in both a hands-on and visible way. We're very excited about the opportunity this brings to Nextel to spread our message as the premier business communications tool for business 'Doers'. We're equally proud to partner with the Las Vegas Monorail Company and the Las Vegas Convention Center to execute this powerful branding, sales and service concept."


The Nextel environment in the station will offer business travelers a one-of a kind 'wireless experience', including:

  • Nextel experts on hand to provide advice and tutorials on Nextel's wireless solutions, services and products;
  • Hands-on, 3D-interactive video displays featuring on-demand information about products and services that address individual needs and/or interests, including phones, wireless data, 802.11b WLAN technology and business applications;
  • A state-of-the-art Wireless Lounge;
  • A Nextel business theater;
  • Concierge services;
  • An open-air balcony with views of the 'Las Vegas Strip';
  • Convenient access to the convention center & monorail


When completed in the first quarter of 2004, the Las Vegas Monorail will connect the casino resorts of the Las Vegas Strip to the Las Vegas Convention Center. Monorail stations are located at the MGM Grand, Paris/Bally's, the Flamingo, the Imperial Palace/Harrah's, the Las Vegas Convention Center, the Las Vegas Hilton and the Sahara. Plans are also underway for extensions of the system to the Fremont Street Experience in downtown Las Vegas and McCarran International Airport.

The monorail system will travel on a single rail 20 feet above the ground on average, with a pinnacle that towers 70 feet above the Las Vegas Convention Center. It will consist of nine trains, each with four connected cars, and seven stations. Initially, the trains will run from 6 a.m. until 2 a.m., 365 days a year.

"Nextel's commitment to Las Vegas further substantiates that our city offers much more than just the weekend getaway. Las Vegas is a viable and thriving convention and meeting destination, complete with groundbreaking technology for leisure and business travelers alike," said Manuel J. Cortez, president and CEO, Las Vegas Convention and Visitor's Authority.

The monorail will employ the first fully automated control system network that allows driverless operation and incorporates fail-safe protection methods throughout the software and equipment, making it the most technologically advanced urban transportation system in the world. The train will be able to reach speeds of 50 mph. Passengers will pay an average of $3.00 per ride.

"We are very pleased with the commitment that Nextel has made to the Las Vegas Monorail," said John Haycock, chairman of the Las Vegas Monorail Company. "The Nextel environment on the Las Vegas Convention Center station will serve the needs of millions of monorail riders and convention center attendees for many years to come, and in a way that could be done only in Las Vegas."

During an announcement press conference held outside the Las Vegas Convention Center, Nextel also unveiled its four-car monorail train. Amid fireworks, confetti canons and Vegas-style fanfare, the Nextel-imaged train drove into the scene on the monorail guideway 30 feet above the crowd.

"We are very fortunate to have Nextel as our first station partner," said Francois Badeau, chairman of TransMax Group, the company that created the Las Vegas Monorail Team(TM) and led the charge to develop the Las Vegas Monorail. "It is clear that Nextel shares our vision of the monorail as an unparalleled marketing vehicle as well as a unique mode of public transportation. We look forward to working with them to market their brand and the Las Vegas Monorail together."


Nextel Communications, a Fortune 300 company based in Reston, VA, is a leading provider of fully integrated wireless communications services and has built the largest guaranteed all-digital wireless network in the country covering thousands of communities across the United States. Nextel and Nextel Partners, Inc., currently serve 293 of the top 300 U.S. markets. Through recent market launches, Nextel and Nextel Partners service is available today in areas of the U.S. where approximately 248 million people live or work.


The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA) is charged with marketing Southern Nevada as a tourism and convention destination worldwide, and also with operating the Las Vegas Convention Center and Cashman Center. With more than 128,000 hotel rooms in Las Vegas alone and 9 million square feet of meeting and exhibit space citywide, the LVCVA's mission centers on attracting ever-increasing numbers of leisure and business visitors to the area. For more information, go to

Editor's Note: For high-resolution digital images of the Nextel station and train please contact Beth Passarella at (714) 573-2746 or e-mail at or Joel Shadle at (703) 433-4654 or e-mail at

SOURCE: Nextel Communications, Inc.

Nextel Communications, Inc., Reston
Margaret Brown, 703-433-4904
Rebecca Gertsmark, 703-433-3776
Reach Group
Kim Craft, 714-573-0842
Marla Malkin, 714-573-0884
Rogich Communications
Lee Haney, 702-796-1773
Nextel Communications, Inc.
Paul Blalock, 703-433-4300