Latest Cherokee Project Goes from Green to Platinum

Private equity firm’s headquarters is first LEED Platinum project in North Carolina

Raleigh, NC, November 5, 2007 – Cherokee, a private equity firm that specializes in the sustainable redevelopment of environmentally impaired properties worldwide, received Platinum certification under the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) green building rating system for its new corporate headquarters.

The firm’s Platinum-certified headquarters is in a hundred-year-old historic building in downtown Raleigh, N.C. Cherokee worked with local groups, Tise-Kiester Architects, Empire Hardhat Construction, Carter & Burgess, and Thompson Consulting to rehabilitate the former furniture warehouse into an innovative, award-winning, green building that is fit with hundreds of environmentally responsible and high performance features.

“As a company that is deeply committed to environmental responsibility, sustainability and urban revitalization, it is important that we were able to set an example with our own corporate headquarters,” said Thomas F. Darden, CEO for Cherokee. “We are very proud that our efforts have been certified by the USGBC and that we now join a highly exclusive group of LEED Platinum projects.”

Cherokee’s new office is one of only 61 LEED Platinum projects in the world, and the first ever in North Carolina. Only six percent of the LEED-certified projects worldwide are designated with Platinum status. Moreover, Cherokee was excited to learn that its headquarters is only one of a few known historic renovations worldwide that have earned this distinct honor and the first LEED-certified building in the city of Raleigh.

The new facility incorporates energy-saving concepts such as a highly insulated, reflective roof to reduce heat gain, ENERGY STAR-certified office equipment and efficient lighting systems; water-saving features including efficient faucets and waterless urinals; and healthy indoor air quality features that include zero- or low-VOC paints, adhesives, sealants, furniture and carpeting. Additionally, important green decisions were made in regards to proximity of the site to public transportation, and the building includes showers and bike storage to encourage additional alternative transit options. Moreover, 86 percent of the construction and demolition waste—an estimated 25 tons—was diverted from the landfill.

The urban office space retains 60 percent of the existing building interior, and when compared to traditional buildings it reduces water use by roughly 45 percent, energy use by 25 percent, and it provides 90 percent of occupants with natural light and views to the outdoors. In addition, the office workstations use 82 percent recycled content.

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Cherokee manages a group of investment funds that specialize in the reclamation and revitalization of environmentally impaired real estate. The firm partners with communities to help transform underutilized properties making them clean and safe, and returning them to productive use. Since the 1990s, Cherokee has acquired more than 525 properties across North America and Western Europe with an aggregate transaction value of $1.8 billion. Additional information about Cherokee can be found at www.cherokeefund.com.

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