Business & Economy
6:23 pm
Wed May 11, 2011

Second Area Code Coming to the Triangle

Triangle residents will soon have to dial 10 digits to make local phone calls. That's because almost all numbers with the 919 area code are used up. Switzon Wigfall is a Senior Operations Analyst with the North Carolina Utilities Commission. He says this is a result of the explosion of cell phone use.

Switzon Wigfall: "When you have school kids 7 and 8 years old with cell phones, you can see the multiplicity effect of all the applications that's taken place in telecommunication markets today. So, yes. As some point, you exhaust the numbers."

New phone numbers are expected to start being assigned to the 984 area code sometime next year. That means family members and neighbors could end up with different area codes, and all residents will have to dial 10 digits for local numbers. Locals who make a call to the other area code won't be charged for a long distance call. This is already taking place in Charlotte. And Wigfall says residents in Winston-Salem and Greensboro can expect their 336 area code to expire around the end of the year 2015.

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