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Whitehall Corporate Center Addition to Feature Eight Towers

(March 22, 2008) The Charlotte Observer reported last month that American Asset Corporation planned to built eight office towers of twelve stories or more in the mixed-use Phase Two of its Whitehall Corporate Center to the southeast of the I-485/Arrowood Road interchange. (See 8 towers to lift suburban offices to a new level.)

This week the developers met with the Steele Creek Residents Association Land Use Committee to give an update on the plans.

The initial site plan in the rezoning request (2008-053) included eight office towers with 12 or more stories containing up to 2.5 million square feet, significantly more that the 1.3 million square feet that the current zoning allows. However, city planning staff have requested they cut back to 1.8 million square feet. Developers plan to propose reducing four of the buildings to seven stories, bringing the total office space to 2.1 million square feet.

Four of the buildings would line a plaza that would extend out from the 5-1/2 acre Moody Lake. Walkways would circle the lake, and both the plaza and lakefront would feature sculptures and gardens. The plaza could be a site for outdoor community events.


Under revised plans, the four buildings in the middle of this rendering would be seven stories each. A plaza would be built between them, extending from the lake.

Runoff from the plaza and other impervious surfaces will be collected and treated before draining into the lake.

The tall office building at the northeast end of the lake, as well as the other buildings on the northwest side of the lake, are allowed by current zoning and are not part of this request. Construction on this office building could begin within a year.  Other buildings in this area could house two hotels, restaurants, and shopping.

From 160 to 200 residential units are planned on the property to the southeast of the office buildings. The units would be in three or four story buildings and could be either rental of for dale units. The area between this Whitehall Corporate Center property and Whitehall Commons shopping center is already zoned for high density residential.

The plan includes several multi-story parking decks. Some of these will have retail units on the edges, especially on the sides facing the residential units, to make them less obtrusive.

The office buildings and other buildings could house from 12,000 to 14,000 workers. Developers will be obligated to provide road improvements to Arrowood Road and the interchange with I-85, which could include adding more lanes. Two entrances would have traffic signals.

Plans already are in the works for adding another turn lane off Arrowood Road onto Whitehall Park Drive and  Phase One of Whitehall Corporate Center. Left turns from Whitehall Park Drive onto Arrowood Road would be prevented. An extension of Arco Corporate Drive to Sandy Porter Road currently is under construction. This new road will provide an alternate route to the closed left turn.

In support of city requirements for connectivity, the main road through the development would continue into the residential development to the southeast and eventually to Whitehall Commons shopping center. The road would bridge the shallow end of the lake. Infrastructure construction and improvements on the property and on adjacent roads will cost in the tens of millions.

Phase One of Whitehall Corporate Center features several works of art, including the spectacular Metalmorphosis. So artwork in Phase Two likely will be significant assets to the community. (View a live webcam of Metalmorphosis at www.metalmorphosis.tv.)

Due to continued negotiations with city planning staff, the public hearing has been postponed until June 16. Developers will hold a community meeting in the area sometime before then. They hope for rezoning approval in July. Construction could start within the year, but it could take up to ten years to complete the whole development.

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