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As the Internet and telecommunications companies have grown over the past several years, buildings have been retrofitted to house the computers, switches and routers that keep Web users connected. But, a new six-story building to be erected by the Durst Organization on the block bounded by 11th and 12th Avenues and 57th and 58th Streets may be the first of its kind. So says Robert Stella, senior vice president of CB Richard Ellis, which will lease the building. “Most of what’s out there are retrofits of buildings designed 30 to 60 years ago. As far as we know, there’s no other building in a major downtown CBD that been built for this purpose,” he says.

NYCyberCenter, as the half-million-sf facility will be known, is being tailored to fit the needs of telecom firms with reinforced floors, redundant service elevators and extra-high ceilings. Demolition of existing structures is scheduled to begin next June, with completion of the center slated for July 2002.

The recent financial difficulties faced by some on-line companies do not trouble Stella. “This building is being put up on the infrastructure side of the dot.coms, so as the Internet grows there’s going to be more demand for the services that these types of properties will house. There are things that haven’t been invented that this type of building will house. What’s more, New York City is the telecommunications capitol of the world. Everyone wants to be here,” he says.

No information was available about the cost of the development or the company’s projections on cost per sf. The architect is Fox & Fowle, the engineering firm is Jaros Baum & Bolles.

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