Boulder Commons: Innovating Commercial Space for Climate Protection

March 27, 2018/Uncategorized

Environmental sustainability, social impact and competitive financial returns define Morgan Creek Ventures mission and project goals. We aim to build a real estate portfolio that will allow us to share information on best practices and innovation while being a catalyst for sustainable, social impact real estate development. Boulder Commons, comprised of two separate aspiring Net Zero Energy (NZE) buildings, is our most significant impact project to date.

At approximately 100,000 gross square feet, Boulder Commons is the largest multi-tenant aspiring NZE building in the nation. We committed ourselves to elevating the tenant experience through use of off-the-shelf parts and leading-edge building systems. An east-facing solar wall and angled-roof solar array allow the building to produce its own energy. L.E.D. lighting, variable refrigerant volume HVAC systems, thermally-coated, triple-pane windows and a tight building envelope optimize energy conservation and help create day-lit interior spaces. Working closely with a team of architects and landscape designers, we designed an aesthetically pleasing building that fits well in its mixed-use location in the heart of Boulder Junction, Boulder’s new transit village.

Community and connectivity have also been key drivers behind Boulder Commons. We wanted to enhance the emerging community at Boulder Junction. Within the building, we made the lobby a common space, commissioning a local art gallery to install a rotating, public exhibit, and allowing tenants to use spaces within it for work and social gatherings.

Alternative mobility was another essential element of the project. Boulder Commons is designed to make sustainable mobility easy through a private bike fleet and all-inclusive passes to Boulder’s regional transit system for each tenant’s use, allowing them to take advantage of the building’s location just steps from the Boulder Junction RTD transit station. Our tenants represent a variety of industries, from a sustainability consulting group, to a law firm, to a data analytics company.

To date, the project has delivered market rate returns and rental rates competitive with comparable, Class-A stock in our market. Boulder Commons is proof of our ability to profitably develop and lease an aspiring NZE building.

We are currently in the design phase of Boulder Commons Phase II, a mixed-use, residential project which will improve on what we’ve learned about the design and performance of an NZE commercial building and expand our sustainable, social impact portfolio into the multifamily market.

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