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New York City Buildings to Open Doors for Green Tech Startups


Last Friday, the New York City Council announced the opening of a request-for-applications process for startup companies in the green building industry. Dubbed the Municipal Entrepreneurial Testing System, or METS, the program is aimed at New York City-based green tech companies (or those whose technologies will create jobs here) seeking to get their products to market more quickly by testing them in city-owned buildings.

METS was actually first announced back in 2010 by City Council Speaker Christine Quinn during her State of the City speech. The concept is not only to improve the environmental performance of buildings, but to attract new companies to New York and create jobs. For example, the RFA is specifically seeking applications from companies that manufacture products within 14 discrete areas impacting building performance, including lighting and lighting controls, energy management systems, submetering and related measuring and monitoring software, renewable energy (including PV and wind), and combined heat and power.

A panel of technical specialists will review the proposals and select a group of finalists based on feasibility, scalability, expected cost-effectiveness once commercially available, compliance with current laws, and other competitive criteria. The city also intends to forward particularly promising applications to building owners and outside investment groups, they want to encourage citizens to get solar panel installation services for their homes and local businesses. An advisory committee culled from academics, building owners, and energy industry representatives will assist the city in its review process, which should be completed by the end of the summer. Currently, there is no timetable for when the first installations will take place.

Interested companies must submit a 1-page letter of intent by May 27 and the full 5-page application by June 30. A copy of both are available for download here.

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