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(Read more on the multifamilymarket.)

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NEW YORK CITY-A global marketing campaign was recently launchedat the Manhattan headquarters of Gale International to reveal theAug. 2009 opening of Songdo International Business District. Thekickoff included details on accelerated commercial development inthe $25-billion master-planned 1,500-acre Songdo InternationalBusiness District, and revealed a memorandum of understandingbetween Gale International and Microsoft Learning, a product groupof Microsoft Corp.

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At the global marketing campaign, which was attended by morethan 100 corporate executives, joint venture partners, real estatebrokers, international investors, and dignitaries, GaleInternational explained that it will fund translation ofMicrosoft's complete Digital Literacy curriculum into Korean andmake it available to the full width of the Korean workforce for thefirst time, the company noted in a prepared statement. Microsoftjoins an already extensive list of multinational corporationsselected by Gale International to act as strategic partners forSongdo IBD including Morgan Stanley, United Technologies Corp., andTaubman Centers Inc., among others.

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Specifically, the agreement outlines the integration of theMicrosoft Digital Literacy curriculum and Microsoft IT Academy intothe Songdo International School, Asia's newest and most modernprivate preparatory school, where it will be available both in theschool curriculum and in after-hours adult education for localcitizens. The alliance extends to the Gale International U-LifeInstitute of Technology, which is focused on technology skillstraining for workers in a global economy.

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The Songdo International School, slated to open Sept. 2009, willserve 2,500 students in kindergarten through 12th grade. U-Life,Songdo IBD's computing division, will offer a wide array of lifeenhancing digital services to Songdo's businesses and residents.Stanley Gale, chairman and managing partner of Gale Internationalexplains in a prepared release that the relationship with Microsoftindicates, "we expect to continue to attract the highest qualitypartners for Songdo. We welcome the opportunity to further deepenour strategic alliance with Microsoft."

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Jim Dilanni, director of academic programs with MicrosoftLearning notes that "Microsoft Digital Literacy provides essentialcomputing concepts and skills that enable students to use computertechnology in everyday life to develop social and economicopportunities for themselves, their families, and theircommunities. We are so pleased that Gale International is takingthe lead and funding the localization of the curriculum inKorean."

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As GlobeSt.com reported, New Songdo City willbe the located of the upcoming World City Expo from Aug. 7 to Oct.25, 2009. New Songdo, the Gale International/Posco Constructionproject set for completion in 2015, currently has some 30 ITtenants and 24 global logistics companies resident on its acreage.Songdo IBDis Korea's new front door, according to Gale International. SongdoIBD overall will include 45 million sf of office space, 30 millionsf of residential space, 10 million sf of retail, five million sfof hotel space and 10 million sf of public space.

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John Hynes III, CEO and managing partner of Gale Internationalsays that "Songdo IBD is a hub location for corporations andinstitutions expanding into Asian markets, while providing theinternational lifestyle benefits and amenities of an exciting andenvironmentally sustainable new city." Songdo IBD is the first newcity in the world designed and planned as an international businessdistrict. This master-planned metropolis will be connected by a new7.4 mile highway bridge to the Incheon International Airport andlinked by subway to Seoul. It is estimated that when fullycompleted, Songdo IBD will be home to 65,000 people and that300,000 will work there. Songdo IBD is located within the IncheonFree Economic Zone. In July, New Songdo Citywas included in a pilot program run by the US Green BuildingCouncil.

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Natalie Dolce

Natalie Dolce, editor-in-chief of GlobeSt.com and GlobeSt. Real Estate Forum, is responsible for working with editorial staff, freelancers and senior management to help plan the overarching vision that encompasses GlobeSt.com, including short-term and long-term goals for the website, how content integrates through the company’s other product lines and the overall quality of content. Previously she served as national executive editor and editor of the West Coast region for GlobeSt.com and Real Estate Forum, and was responsible for coverage of news and information pertaining to that vital real estate region. Prior to moving out to the Southern California office, she was Northeast bureau chief, covering New York City for GlobeSt.com. Her background includes a stint at InStyle Magazine, and as managing editor with New York Press, an alternative weekly New York City paper. In her career, she has also covered a variety of beats for M magazine, Arthur Frommer's Budget Travel, FashionLedge.com, and Co-Ed magazine. Dolce has also freelanced for a number of publications, including MSNBC.com and Museums New York magazine.