An architecture for the interconnection of IEEE 802 Local Area Networks (LANs) below the level of the MAC Service, which is transparent to logical link control (LLC) and higher layer protocols, is defined. Transparent Bridging between Fibre Distributed Data Interface (FDDI) LANs and between FDDI LANs and IEEE 802 LANs is included. The operation and management of the connecting Bridges is specified. A Spanning Tree Algorithm and Protocol ensures a loop-free topology and provides redundancy. The Bridging method is not particular to any MAC Type; criteria for additional MAC-specific Bridging methods are defined. Source-Routing Transparent (SRT) Bridges are defined in an annex, and the protocols for the operation of source routing in an SRT Bridge are specified.