Austin area to welcome 737 area code

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by HEATHER KOVAR / KVUE News and photojournalist SCOTT MCKENNEY

Bio | Email | Follow: @HeatherK_KVUE

kvue.com

Posted on May 29, 2013 at 6:26 PM

Updated Wednesday, May 29 at 6:41 PM

AUSTIN -- Starting Saturday June 1, everyone in the Austin area will have to dial "512" when making a phone call. Dialing 10 digits is preparing the area for the new area code that will be added in July. Get ready to welcome 737.

The growth of Austin, along with demand for new wireless numbers, is taking its toll on 512.

Chairman of the Public Utility Commission, Donna Nelson says if you want a 512 number, you are guaranteed one from now until July 1.  "After July 1, you might get a 512. You might get a 737, but 512 we're predicting will be gone by the end of this year."

She says people who already have a 512 will not lose it. 512 is one of the four original Texas area codes. The other three are 214, 713 and 915. The new 737 will be the 25th area code in Texas, and the first new one in 10 years.

"It just shows that our city is really growing, which is great. And other cities like Houston and Dallas have other area codes too," said Austin resident Philisa Giannukos.

Austin's new area code might remind you of a 737 plane. Southwest airlines flies only 737's and that airline carries one-third of all passengers at ABIA, with 68 flights to and from a day.

The Public Utility Commission says we shouldn't need another new area code until 2047, but by then who knows what the phone system, or even Austin, will be like.

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