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A New Force for Green Building Projects

NYC’s Urban Technology Innovation Center will bring together green building technology companies with the building owners who want to test them out.

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If major cities are to survive the coming energy crunch, they will have to become more efficient. Enter the NYC Urban Technology Innovation Center, a just-announced initiative that will bring together green building technology companies with the building owners who want to test them out.

The center, a partnership between the New York City Economic Development Corporation, Columbia University,
Polytechnic Institute of New York University, and the City University of
New York (CUNY), will develop a membership structure that will allow building owners and technology companies to join for between
$1,000 to $50,000 a year. IBM will offer up technology to help the center evaluate the performance of test products.

“IBM plans to collaborate with the NYC Urban Technology Innovation
Center to apply advanced computing technology–such as cloud computing,
real-time analytics, and supercomputing, for example–to help make
New York City a global leader in deploying smart-building
technologies,” said Dr. Katherine Frase, Vice President, IBM Research, in a statement. “This approach will help building owners in the city increase the
attractiveness, efficiency and sustainability of their real estate
through significant improvements in how they use energy, water and
other resources.”

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Members will be asked to share the results of their research for further investigation. And ultimately, the center could serve as an independent evaluation center for green building products (i.e. energy-efficient windows or HVAC systems). This all depends, of course, on how many companies and test sites join the center. But with the green building market expected to balloon from $71.1 billion now to $173 billion by 2015, the center probably won’t lack for eager members.

Ariel Schwartz can be reached on Twitter or by email.

About the author

Ariel Schwartz is a Senior Editor at Co.Exist. She has contributed to SF Weekly, Popular Science, Inhabitat, Greenbiz, NBC Bay Area, GOOD Magazine and more

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