CHICAGO, March. 19, 2015 — Commuters riding the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) Blue and Red Subway lines can look forward to enjoying enhanced cell service coverage and increased connectivity speeds in the underground portions of the Red and Blue routes in late 2015. The CTA is leading an experienced team including Chicago’s own distributed network leader ExteNet Systems, lead project contractor Aldridge Electric Inc. and all four of the national wireless carriers – AT&T Mobility, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon Wireless – working alongside to deploy a 21st century wireless communication solution. The project will deliver 4G LTE wireless services and a superior mobile experience to CTA riders in the shortest timeframe possible, as well as create new jobs in Chicago.

Data shows people now check their mobile devices more than 150 times each day – that’s nearly once every 6 minutes,” said Tormod Larsen, Chief Technology Officer for ExteNet Systems. “The CTA reports that 180,000 people ride the Blue and Red subway lines each day. Research shows smartphone penetration has already reached 75 percent and people increasingly expect a seamless wireless connection anywhere they go. Being able to fully leverage one’s smart device with an updated and modern wireless network infrastructure while on the CTA will be a major benefit for riders. ExteNet is proud to bring its expertise in RF network design, operations and maintenance to help deliver a better on-line experience to CTA riders.”

John Flynn, CTO of the CTA stated, “As a result of this initiative, the CTA is poised to host the most comprehensive 4G LTE enabled subway network in North America. As Mayor Emanuel recently emphasized, advanced broadband connectivity and communications are imperative for today’s modern city.” Upon project completion, the CTA will have an advanced wireless network throughout the Blue and Red Subway lines, including the 22 miles of tunnels, which will ultimately enable riders to remain connected at all times.

“For over 25 years, Aldridge Electric Inc. has worked for the CTA to meet the communication and infrastructure needs of CTA customers,” said Thomas McLinden, President at Aldridge Electric Inc. “We’re proud to continue our mission of ‘Building America’s infrastructure to improve quality of life,’ and we look forward to working with the CTA, ExteNet and our other partners to successfully deploy 4G LTE wireless connectivity.”

Ross Manire, President and CEO of ExteNet Systems, emphasized, “ExteNet brings a wealth of experience in the design, deployment and operation of distributed networks in complex projects that enable advanced connectivity across both indoor and outdoor environments. We remain committed to the Chicago and Illinois technology communities and continue to scale our operations to address the continued demand for mobile connectivity. We are looking forward to delivering a 21st century wireless solution for the CTA and Aldridge Electric in this high-profile project in our own Chicago backyard.”

About ExteNet Systems, Inc.

Lisle, IL-based ExteNet Systems, Inc. designs, builds, owns and operates distributed networks for use by wireless carriers and venue owners in key strategic markets. Using distributed antenna systems (DAS), small cells, Wi-Fi and other technologies, ExteNet deploys networks to enhance coverage and capacity and enable superior wireless service in both outdoor and indoor environments. Primary markets addressed by ExteNet include outdoor distributed networks in a variety of densely occupied or heavily traveled settings, and key indoor settings, including sports and entertainment venues, the hospitality industry, commercial buildings, and healthcare facilities. For more information, please visit

“ExteNet®” is a registered trademark of ExteNet Systems, Inc.

About Aldridge Electric, Inc.

Aldridge is a significant industrial contractor, headquartered in Libertyville, Ill., working across the United States. With a focus on infrastructure, Aldridge works in the transportation market including transit, highways and aviation, as well as in the power market specializing in utility and transmission projects. According to Engineering News Record (ENR), Aldridge is ranked as one of the nation’s top specialty contractors providing comprehensive electrical and drilled foundations services. More information is available at

About Chicago Transit Authority

The Chicago Transit Authority is the nation’s second-largest public transit system and provides an estimated 1.7 million rides each weekday.

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