Guess what city is about to become home to the first LEED certified multi-family development in Arkansas?
If you guessed Fayetteville, pat yourself on the back. You were right.
The new apartment complex, Eco Modern Flats, is a project of local real-estate man Jeremy Hudson of MC3 Multifamily, and Portland developers Bob Stevenson and Bob Dant.
The project began when Hudson and his partners purchased the Glendale Apartments building at 130 S. Hill Street with plans to renovate the 40-year-old complex. The idea to create modern, energy-effecient, eco-friendly apartments wasn’t the initial goal with the project, but became an opportunity discovered during the remodeling process.
“Basically, we started with a concrete box with virtually no insulation in the walls, not much insulation on the roof, single pane windows, etc.,” said Hudson. “We realized that the things we wanted to do to shore up the construction became an opportunity to go for the LEED certification, so we ran with it.”
Hudson enlisted local architect Chris Baribeau of Modus Studio to begin exploring the potential of the complex. Baribeau took the blank canvases of the concrete-block building, and set out to create a modern living space unlike anything else in Fayetteville.
“The building already had great bones, and the palette of materials is simple and structurally sound,” Baribeau said. “It lends itself perfectly to modern and sustainable design.”
The building will utilize environmental features such as a solar hot water system, innovative “Mini-Split” heating and cooling units, soy-based insulation from local company Biobased Technologies, landscaping with native plants, VOC-free paints, and rainwater harvesting for landscape-irrigation. The complex will also offer recycling for each of the 96 apartments, something not available in most multi-family dwellings in Fayetteville.
Hudson said he feels that the centralized location of the property will also promote walkability, as well as bikeability with the close proximity to the Fayetteville trail system.
“We really want to promote a pedestrian-friendly and bike-friendly environment for our residents,” Hudson said. “With the property being so close to the trails, downtown and the university, that’s going to be big for us.”
Another interesting thing about the project is the all-inclusive pricing structure for renting the apartments. The $725 monthly rental price also includes all utility fees as well as cable television and high speed internet access for each of the 600-square-foot units.
Hudson said that doesn’t mean setting up a wireless router somewhere, and hoping for the best.
“Each unit will have its own dedicated modem just like you would if you had your own service,” he said.
If all goes well with Eco Modern Flats, Hudson said the project could become a prototype for future greenovation programs in other parts of Fayetteville.
The first 24 units will be move-in ready beginning in early January. The remainder of the complex is expected to be completed in late 2011.
Interior photos from a model unit at Eco Modern Flats
Courtesy photos: Eco Modern Flats Facebook Page