A lack of resource
The industrial revolution depended on coal to occur. In 170 years, if nothing is done about the overuse of coal, it will run out. The lack of coal will stop the steam engine from developing, as it was powered by coal and was invented to originally pump water out of coal mines.
All you have to do to prevent alternative power is to have no river going through the area and there to be very little wind. This means the curse is really finding the right location that makes alternative power sources unusable. (You also might want the electronics of the former civilization to have been deteriorated so they do not function and thus will not be experimented with)
The AI in the AI revolution dumped lots of carcinogenic materials to get rid of the civilization that created the AI, these materials could stay and continue to affect the civilization that got formed later. These materials would slow technological development by lowering the lifespans of the people in that area, allowing less time for education and development.
When the former civilization fell, the AI left behind some nano-bots disconnected from it, so if it shut down for some reason, these nano-bots would continue to prevent an industrial revolution. These nano-bots have some lesser AI (deep learning might work?). This AI finds technology that is capable of starting an industrial revolution, it breaks it slightly so it does not work. These nano-bots would have the potential to construct each other and would be solar powered, so they can survive for a theoretically infinite amount of time. These bots would be small enough to be dismissed as nearly indestructible ants. They would communicate with EM waves to use each other as a database, or have a database hidden in a rock or something that stores the information amount the civilization for them.
Don't allow agriculture
Without agriculture, the technology necessary for the industrial revolution would never have developed. To prevent agriculture from developing, make the soil either rich in heavy metals, have the wrong particle sizes, have a high pH, etc. These solutions would not work, as the soil will eventually be buried. Instead, have a seasonal marsh with no outlet. Instead, the water evaporates, leaving behind high concentrations of salt behind, as upstream of this marsh, the rocks have high concentrations of Halite, inhibiting plant growth to a point that agriculture is no longer efficient enough to sustain any population.
Instead of developing agriculture, the society would be a pastoralist society. This would keep them from settling down and developing the steam engine, as early steam engines were heavy. Also, being nomads, it would not make sense to invest in a mine that could only be used occasionally to get coal for the steam engine.
The faster exchange of ideas through pastoral peoples would allow their society to develop technology that could make their society resemble in some ways a preindustrial society. If they raided beyond the borders of the AI's influence, they could get ideas from those peoples that they would not develop on their own, which would be much harder once the civilization beyond their borders industrialized. Also, this theoretical industrial society might not have interests in the land that the pastoral society occupied due to its infertility and somewhat hostil peoples.