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OWINGS MILLS, MD-Local developer Black Oak Associates has taken another incremental step toward realizing what it says will be the first LEED-certified shopping center in the Mid-Atlantic region.

The firm has closed on a 12.5-acre parcel near the intersection of Routes 32 and 26 in Carroll County–a site that is next to a 310,000-sf community shopping center also owned and managed by Black Oak.

A $20-million, 90,000-sf green lifestyle center will be developed on its newly acquired land. The complex, Main Street Eldersburg, will front on Londontown Boulevard and consist of three separate buildings, with five pad sites on the parking lot, for a total of five anchors.

Groundbreaking is set for this summer now that the company has received final approval from the Carroll County Planning Commission. Delivery is expected by fall 2008.

The project has received pre-construction Silver Core and Shell LEED certification from the United States Green Building Council. Features include a passive solar “daylighting” system; a high efficiency HVAC package that will contribute to an expected energy savings of 30% each year; a cistern water system that will help to save an expected 30% of water use on an annual basis; the use of white pavers to reflect light.

R. Dixon Harvey, Jr., president of Black Oak, says the company hopes to develop its future projects as LEED-certified as well. “Our company’s goal is to be among the first development groups in the retail sector to demonstrate the importance of building green,” he says.

KLNB Retail has been tapped to be leasing agent for Main Street Eldersburg. Right now it is marketing the project casual dining restaurants, soft goods, men’s and women’s apparel stores and home furnishings retailers.

Bignell, Watkins and Hasser is the project’s architect. Daft-McCune-Walker is the landscape architect.

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