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City Hall Renovations To Save Taxpayers Hundreds Of Thousands Per Year

Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl and U.S. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu today unveiled plans for energy-efficiency improvements to the 97 year-old City Hall building.

Overall, the renovation process will save the city an estimated $475,000 per year, and will also generate nearly 40 constructions jobs.

Ravenstahl said one main renovation will be to the steam line that provides heat and air conditioning to City Hall.

"We estimate that this will reduce our carbon footprint by 800 metric tons each year," Ravenstahl said.

In addition, new electrical lighting and timers will be installed, saving the city $75,000 per year.

The mayor feels that the investment is worth the upfront cost.

"All of these projects will pay for themselves in about seven years, but the upgrades will last for 20 years and beyond," Ravenstahl said. "This means that over the course of these improvements, millions of dollars will be saved."

Secretary Chu said such projects have far-reaching effects.

"As we take historical buildings like this, we take our own homes, we take other buildings, and we retrofit them so that they can be much more energy efficient," Chu said.

The $3.4 million renovation project is a part of President Obama's Recover Act and the Energy Department's Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) program.

The renovations will begin February 27, and are expected to be completed in eight months.