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AHR Expo in Dallas on track to become the HVAC/R industry’s largest Southwest event

Coming off a record-setting 2006 show in Chicago, the 2007 AHR Expo is on track to establish more records as final preparations are made for the Jan. 29-31 event to be held at the Dallas Convention Center. Show management has reserved the entire Dallas Convention Center for the event, with display space of 350,000 square feet. This exceeds the 315,000 square feet of space used when the AHR Expo was last in Dallas in 2000, putting this year’s edition on pace to be the biggest show ever held in the Southwest by the HVACV/R industry. As of December, more than 1,700 companies had reserved exhibitor space. In 2000, there were just more than 1,000 exhibitors. Show hours will be from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. on Monday and Tuesday, Jan. 29-30, and 10 a.m.-4 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 31.

Last year’s Chicago show set records for the number of exhibitors (1,992), square footage (411,175 square feet) and number of international exhibitors (314). A total of 57,673 registered HVAC/R professional (36,891 visitors and 20,782 exhibitor personnel) attended the 2006 show.

Texas continues to be one of the largest residential and commercial HVAC/R markets in the United States. Currently Texas is experiencing a residential housing boom due to consumers’ buying trends and low long-term interest rates, according to the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University. With the nation’s third-largest concentration of companies that command more than $1 billion in annual sales, Dallas is an especially attractive market for the HVAC/R industry.

According to a study by The Freedonia Group, the demand for HVAC equipment is expected to grow to $14.3 billion by 2009. This growth will be driven by the increase in non-residential construction and residential remodeling.

‘The Show is off to a strong and impressive start,” said Clay Stevens, president of International Exhibition Co. ‘This enthusiastic response from previous exhibitors and active interest from new companies supports the fact that the AHR Expo is indeed the HVAC/R industry’s leading world event.”

The Dallas venue was selected in collaboration with ASHRAE and ARI on the basis of accessibility by exhibitors and attendees, size of the regional, industrial, residential and commercial markets, and concentration of HVAC/R professionals and suppliers.

As usual, one of the highlights of the show will be the announcement of the winners of the AHR Expo Innovation Awards. The fifth annual competition is designed to encourage the development of new products that are both creative and useful, meet today’s HVAC/R demands and feature new technology that will have a significant impact on the residential, commercial or industrial markets.

Sponsored by International Exposition Company, the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers and the Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute, the 2007AHR Expo Innovation Awards competition seeks out products and solutions that meet today’s complex energy challenges, offer innovative design, provide value and have useful applications.

The panel of judges is made up of specially selected ASHRAE members who are knowledgeable about a wide variety of products. Each year, the industry sees imagination become reality with submissions in nine product categories: Building Automation, Cooling, Green Building, Heating, Indoor Air Quality, Refrigeration, Software, Tools & Instruments, and Ventilation.

In addition to recognizing outstanding product innovation, the award program entry fees will be used to benefit local HVAC/R students in the Dallas area. During the first four years of the program, thousands of dollars have been donated to HVAC/R technical school scholarship funds.

‘The AHR Expo Innovation Awards program has a positive impact on the HVAC/R industry,” said Stevens. ‘It calls attention to how successful manufacturers have been at turning new technology into useful and highly efficient products.”

Also at the show, the ASHRAE Learning Institute will offer a selection of continuing education courses, including several new courses. The courses will include four Professional Development Seminars, including one student PDS, and 14 Short Courses. Each PDS will be held at the Adam’s Mark Hotel and the Short Courses will be held at Dallas Convention Center. All courses carry the appropriate number of continuing education credits, which can be applied toward maintaining P.E. registration. Most ASHRAE Learning Institute Seminars and Short Courses are approved by The Practicing Institute of Engineering, Inc. to provide mandatory education requirements for Professional Engineers in New York state. Course registration will be available onsite in Dallas.

The ASHRAE Meeting at the AHR Expo will also feature 16 seminars addressing current events in the industry. The seminars, sponsored by ASHRAE technical committees, feature more than 40 presentations conducted in a non-commercial format. Eight seminars will be presented on Monday, Jan. 29, and eight on Tuesday, Jan. 30. Most seminars are 90 minutes each. Attendees will receive PDHs (except for New York state).

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