New Durham Apartments Close to Research Triangle Park

In traffic-plagued Raleigh-Durham, Greystar has started construction on an apartment community likely to give residents a break from nightmare commutes.

In traffic-plagued Raleigh-Durham, ground has just been broken on an apartment community likely to give residents a break from nightmare commutes. Construction of the not-yet-named apartments was recently launched by Greystar Real Estate Partners on a heavily wooded 24.6-acre site near Hwy. 70 in the Brightleaf master-planned community between Raleigh and Durham. Greystar Development & Construction LP will serve as general contractor on the project, while Meeks + Partners Architects handled the design of the buildings.

The community will be located just 1 to 1.5 miles north of the Research Triangle Park, home to more than 170 research and development firms with approximately 40,000 employees and 10,000 contract workers, and one of the best-known and most successful research parks in the United States.

“It’s easy access for people who do work in the park,” Todd Wigfield, Charleston, S.C.-based managing director for Greystar, tells MHN. “It’s close by, they don’t have to take I-540, which can be a traffic jam. They can take Miami Blvd. a quarter mile from Brightleaf, right into the park.”

The apartment community is the first and will be the only rental complex in the Brightleaf master-planned community, Wigfield adds. Brightleaf is also home to a half-dozen single-family communities, an elementary school, fitness club, Olympic-size pool, tennis courts, and health club and fitness facility, he says.

Design and construction of the apartments have been in accordance with National Green Building Certification standards. Green-minded renters should be drawn to the community’s EnergyStar appliances, low-E windows, energy-efficient air conditioning and recycled construction materials, Wigfield says.

Construction began in May, and both the clubhouse and the first of the apartment community’s dozen buildings are expected to be complete in March 2012.

Just minutes away is the affluent Briar Creek Shopping Center, with more than 700,000 square feet of retailers, as well as Briar Creek Country Club. So it’s scant surprise these apartments will be upscale, Wigfield says. “We feel we’ll get a lot of executives coming in for a year or two to work in Research Triangle Park, as well as some younger executives just starting their careers,” he says.

He adds that Research Triangle Park, drawing on the area’s three major research and development universities–Duke University in Durham, North Carolina State University in Raleigh and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill–has one of the best-educated employment bases in the country.

“We felt this project would appeal to experienced professionals as well as professionals just starting out, who want to live close to work, close to the airport, and close to the great shopping of Briar Creek, about three miles away, but not actually be in the hustle and bustle of Briar Creek.”

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