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We describe and demonstrate nanomechanical near-field proximity perturbation for tuning the effective refractive index of silicon-based high-density photonic integrated circuits. The proximity perturbation technique causes an antisymmetric refractive index change in a directional-coupler implementation, enabling switching action from the cross to the bar state. An almost 8-dB extinction ratio with ~14 ?? ??s switching speeds is experimentally achieved using this technique with our single-mode waveguides of 500 nm ?? 200 nm cross section coupled to a movable 100-nm perturbing dielectric. A practical single-level switch with ring resonators fabricated by CMOS-compatible methods is also demonstrated.