Green Power Developer’s New HQ Comes Clean

A wind power company's headquarters will offer a variety of innovations when it opens in Virginia next year.

It seems only natural that Apex Clean Energy’s new home will check a variety of sustainable boxes. After all, the firm is making a name for itself in the wind power development field, recently striking deals to supply corporate giants like Apple, Facebook and McDonald’s.

Rendering by William McDonough + Partners Courtesy of Apex Clean Energy

In that spirit of innovation, Apex’s headquarters in downtown Charlottesville, Va., will offer an unusual lineup of sustainable features. When complete in mid-2021, the 187,000-square-foot property will only provide net-zero operations through an integrated renewable energy strategy. Apex will be taking 84,000 square feet—equal to the building’s top three floors—as its corporate headquarters. Apex was represented by John Pritzlaff, senior vice president at Cushman & Wakefield | Thalhimer,

At the heart of the project’s energy operations will be its 875 roof- and canopy-mounted solar panels, which will produce an estimated 364 megawatt-hours. That will offset the property’s energy consumption and produce net-zero operations.

Rising to eight stories, the building, which broke ground last month, will have the distinction of being the tallest timber structure in Virginia. Also of note is the property’s sustainably harvested mass timber structure. Cross-laminated timber, known for its high-efficiency strength and fire resistance, will provide the structural material.

Interior view of Virginia’s tallest timber buiding. Rendering by William McDonough + Partners

Compared with a traditional concrete and steel building, the property will realize a potential carbon benefit totaling some 3,000 metric tons. That is roughly the equivalent of carbon emissions from more than 3.1 million pounds of coal burning.

The building will also have an extensive green roof terrace, high-efficiency mechanical systems, electric vehicle charging stations and indoor bicycle storage.

Located on Garrett Street in the city’s Strategic Investment Area, the project will enable Apex to consolidate 170 local employees, who are now located in three separate Charlottesville office buildings. Besides providing a new location for the wind energy developer, the facility will serve as the home of other members of the project team: Riverbend Development, William McDonough + Partners, the project architect, and Hourigan Development, whose Hourigan Construction affiliate will serve as the project’s contractor. In addition to the office space, the property is expected to include about 10,000 square feet of ground-floor retail.

All told, Apex Clean Energy has completed 13 large-scale renewable energy projects in four states, financed 5,027 megawatts of development and has 1,600 megawatts under management.