"Microsoft's Windows Azure and Level 3 Cloud Connect Solutions have announced a partnership aimed at providing enterprises with improved private and hybrid network connections. Azure's new ExpressRoute service will now have a direct network connection to the Level 3 global network, significantly reducing performance and security issues related to peering agreements."
Azure’s ExpressRoute is a way to provide a fast network connection between your enterprise and its cloud. They work with particular Internet service providers such as AT&T or Verizon to setup high-speed circuits such as MPLS VPNs so that you can minimize network latency across the connection. The details of how this works is described here: