$7 Million Glass Fix for Shattered Tower

The Broward school district's headquarters -- once dubbed the Crystal Palace but more recently nicknamed the Plywood Palace -- is finally getting a face-lift.Today, workers will start installing new glass in the Kathleen C.

Wright Administration Center in downtown Fort Lauderdale, a project expected to cost $7 million and stretch over the next several months.

About 1,000 new panes of glass will replace the temporary covering that has enveloped the building since November. And all the glass -- new and old -- will be covered on the inside with a protective film that should keep the panes from falling out if they're broken in a storm.

The 14-story building, which lost a fifth of its glass in the storm, became the symbol for Hurricane Wilma's wrath in South Florida.

Images of the storm-battered building were beamed across the nation -- and to the battery-operated television sets of stunned school district employees.

''I sat there with my mouth open, just shocked,'' said Dildra Martin-Ogburn, the district's director of equal educational opportunities. 'I called my husband and said, `I don't have a building to go back to.' ''

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