Dees Stribling, Contributing Editor
Charlotte, N.C.–Circle at South End, a 360-unit apartment complex that also includes 8,000 square feet of retail space and 714 parking spaces on about five acres, has been awarded a LEED Silver rating by the U.S. Green Building Council. According to the developer, Crescent Resources, silver is the highest level of certification so far among existing North Carolina apartment communities.
The project is located on a remediated former brownfield site. Its green features include parking for fuel-efficient vehicles, units with water-efficient fixtures, recycling centers throughout the community, and close proximity to Charlotte’s light-rail service.
Crescent designed the community to reduce urban heat-island effects and light pollution, as well as to optimize energy efficiency and conserve water through its landscape design. But the green of Circle at South End is more than just passively built into the design of the property. The management of Circle at South End offers green educational programs, including a newsletter, Facebook page and YouTube channel that provide tips for residents on conservation and green living. Managed by Greystar, Circle at South End is also the first smoke-free community in Charlotte.
Circle at South End recently won the 2009-2010 Recycling Incentive Program competition from Charlotte-based Waste Management Concierge. The property’s residents recycled more than 12,000 pounds of household materials during the yearlong competition, which was more per unit than any other Charlotte-area apartment community.
Crescent posits that being green–and offering programs that will help foster a sense of community at the property, such as volunteering opportunities and pet happy hours–helps the property compete for residents.
“Our LEED Silver certification gives us a competitive advantage because green features are a highly sought-after amenity that our residents appreciate,” Tim Dison, senior development manager of Crescent Resources, tells MHN. “They are looking for an apartment community that aligns with their lifestyle and makes the environment a priority. We strive to make it easy for residents to live a greener lifestyle by providing opportunities to reduce their carbon footprint.”
Circle at South End opened June 2009. Crescent’s other Circle-named communities include Circle at Concord Mills in Concord, N.C., Circle at Crosstown in Tampa, Fla., and Circle at Bartram Park in Jacksonville, Fla. Established in 1969 and based in Charlotte, Crescent develops mixed-use developments, apartment and condo projects, country club communities, single-family neighborhoods, and various kinds of commercial real estate properties.