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Hartford Welcomes Construction of New Tech Center
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An old building along Hartford's Columbus Boulevard will soon be demolished. Mayor Eddie Perez says a new $40 million dollar office tower will be erected at the site. As WNPR's Marie Kuhn reports, the project is part of a larger plan to revive the city.

A small crowd cheered as Hartford Mayor Perez unveiled the design plans for the former Broadcast House at Constitution Plaza. 

The 47 year-old building was bought by local developer Abdul Islam, founder of A.I. Engineers, a company that specializes in institutional building and infrastructure.

Daniel Whittenmore, is associate vice president of A.I. Engineers:

The technology in this building is going to create a place that people are going to want to be in. People are going to want to work in this building because it's going to be healthier. It's going to be cheaper to own and to operate. And people lining up behind a vision such as this is the one catalyst that can bring you know, what you see behind me today into what our vision is for the future.

The company plans to turn the 12-story office tower into the A.I Technology Center that follows green building standards. It will include a water recovery system, fuel cells to power mechanical systems, and photovoltaic solar panels.  A-I Engineers hope the design will attain the highest possible level of energy efficiency administered by the US Green Building Council.

Mayor Perez says he hopes private investors such as Islam will create a ripple effect in Hartford.

Whether it's a small one or a large one, it's one that we need. You know, we are going to continue to plan to keep the momentum going, now you know, you can do one or two things. You can stop and wait for things to happen, or you can continue to make things happen, we plan to make things to happen in Hartford.

The building is expected to be completed in 2010.