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Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree gets new life in Connecticut Habitat home

ATLANTA (June 19, 2014) – Habitat for Humanity volunteers added a special touch to a home in Bridgeport, Connecticut, today—lumber milled from the 2013 Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree.

More than 30 volunteers from Tishman Speyer, the co-owners and managers of Rockefeller Center and its iconic Christmas tree, joined with Habitat for Humanity of Coastal Fairfield County to help build a home in partnership with a low-income Bridgeport family. A portion of lumber from the tree, a 76-foot-tall Norway spruce from Shelton, Connecticut, was used throughout the home’s construction.

“This tree has been a symbol of hope and inspiration for millions around the world who travel to New York to see it each year,” said Jonathan Reckford, CEO of Habitat for Humanity International. “We are incredibly grateful to everyone at Tishman Speyer for giving the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree new life as a Habitat home in partnership with a family seeking a decent place to live.”

The Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree was first donated to Habitat for Humanity in 2007. Lumber from previous trees has been used in the construction of homes in Pascagoula, Miss.; Stamford, Conn.; Newburgh, N.Y.; Philadelphia; Morris, N.J.; and New York City. The lumber milled from the 2013 tree will be used in every home completed by Habitat for Humanity of Coastal Fairfield County this year.

The build marks the 186th home built by Habitat for Humanity of Coastal Fairfield County and is located in the Brooklawn/St. Vincent’s neighborhood of Bridgeport.

“We are thankful to be partnering yet again with Tishman Speyer on such a special project, and it will be particularly exciting for each of our new homeowners, whose homes are being completed this year, to have wood from such a symbolic Christmas tree supporting their roofs,” said Bruce Berzin, president of Habitat for Humanity of Coastal Fairfield County. “It’s a unique and highly motivating experience for our many partners, supporters and homeowners to join together in using this tree to produce decent, affordable housing.”

About Habitat for Humanity International
Habitat for Humanity International’s vision is a world where everyone has a decent place to live. Anchored by the conviction that housing provides a critical foundation for breaking the cycle of poverty, Habitat has helped more than 4 million people construct, rehabilitate or preserve homes since 1976. Habitat also advocates for improved access to decent and affordable shelter and supports a variety of funding models that enable families with limited resources to make needed improvements on their homes as their time and resources allow. As a nonprofit Christian housing organization, Habitat works in more than 70 countries and welcomes people of all races, religions and nationalities to partner in its mission. To learn more, donate or volunteer visit habitat.org.

About Habitat for Humanity of Coastal Fairfield County
As a housing ministry, Habitat for Humanity of Coastal Fairfield County seeks to strengthen neighborhoods and build community by partnering with low-income families, community volunteers and donors to build simple, affordable homes that provide first time home ownership opportunities for low-income families. Since 1985, Habitat for Humanity CFC has built a total of 181 homes in the Coastal Fairfield County cities of Bridgeport, Stratford and Stamford.

About Tishman Speyer
Tishman Speyer is one of the leading developers, owners, operators and asset managers of first-class real estate worldwide. Active across North America, Europe, South America and Asia, Tishman Speyer is relied upon by many of the world’s most prestigious corporations to meet their office space needs. As of December 31, 2013, the firm had acquired, developed and/or managed a portfolio of approximately 129 million sq. ft. with a total value of approximately US$66.2 billion since its founding in 1978. Signature assets include New York’s Rockefeller Center and the Chrysler Center, São Paulo’s Torre Norte, Ventura Corporate Towers in Rio de Janeiro and OpernTurm in Frankfurt. Tishman Speyer also has projects at different stages of development currently in Brasília, Chengdu, Frankfurt, Gurgaon, Hyderabad, Paris, Rio de Janeiro, San Francisco, São Paulo, Shanghai, Suzhou and Tianjin.