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Malta energy tech park takes a step forward

"The training and education center for semiconductor manufacturing and alternative and renewable technologies at STEP will prepare produce skilled technicians for jobs in growing industrial sectors which develop and manufacture semiconductors, wind turbines, geothermal products, alternative fuels and energy-efficient buildings," said Callender.

As an added perk, jobs will be created as the park grows. Job openings already listed on the STEP site link from the NYSERDA Web page include openings for engineers, maintenance technicians and accountants.

"We do expect some really good job opportunities there, not only with the companies opening but also with HVCC," said Callender.

The campus design is as atypical as the companies located there. The facilities will be clustered into neighborhoods, organized to create identifiable places and outdoor courtyards to encourage pedestrian activity and informal meetings. To maximize parking lot space, all parking will be located between the neighborhoods and shared by all buildings, which will also increase open space and decrease runoff, an important feature in this type of sustainable design.

The buildings are clustered closely to foster a campuslike environment, and to conserve open space around each neighborhood. Buildings will range from single-story buildings to four-story buildings, with none more than 80 feet high, including rooftop structures.

"Multi-story buildings are desirable because they offer more design opportunity, achieve an effective scale to create memorable neighborhoods, and conserve land and reduce coverage," said Callender. "Because these buildings are clustered into neighborhoods, they have a greater impact than if they were isolated buildings, and there is the potential for companies to conveniently expand in multiple buildings within the same neighborhood."

Shared facilities also limit the need for using cars to move from one area of the park to another.

The property, known as the Malta Test Station, had been used for what were then high-tech development and space research activities. In 1975, NYSERDA assumed ownership of the property and changed the site's mission to energy research and development.

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