The network paradigm is changing rapidly spurred by the dramatic increase in IP traffic and recent progress in photonic network technologies. A key requirement, enhancing the performance of existing IP-based multimedia communication networks, can be most effectively achieved by introducing optical path technologies that exploit wavelength routing. Cost effective and reliable optical cross-connection is essential. Different optical switch technologies have been proposed and tested. Among them, the PLC (Planer Lightwave Circuit) switch has demonstrated excellent performance, particularly with regard to system reliability. Network control mechanisms based on the overlay and peer model models have been developed. The presentation will highlight some of the key system technologies. To develop very large scale and robust networks, effective traffic engineering capabilities are necessary. This will be achieved through optical path control. To develop future IP-centric networks, an operation mechanism based on distributed control is important. The degree to which the necessary transport and IP routing functions are integrated will determine system cost-effectiveness. The Photonic MPLS (Multi Protocol Label Switching) router, which integrates all the functions and provides seamless operation between IP and optical layers, has been proposed and developed. The technical feasibility of a recent prototype system has been proven. Finally, some of the cutting-edge photonic transport technologies that we have recently developed are demonstrated; these technologies will enable us to achieve another level of network performance enhancement in the future.