February 2010

  • Feb

2010 DCC Children’s Water Tower Art Contest Winner Unveiled

February 24, 2010

The young winner of the 2010 Design Center of the Carolinas Children’s Water Tower Art Contest was unveiled Tuesday evening, February 23, at an event at the Design Center of the Carolinas (DCC). The DCC is located at 1930 Camden Road in the Historic South End District. Ram Realty owns and manages the DCC whose tenants include Concentric Marketing, DAS Architecture, and Best Impressions Caterers.

The Design Center of the Carolinas and Ram Realty Services, in partnership with Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS), announced the winner of a very special art contest for the students of Dilworth Elementary School and Sedgefield Elementary School. The theme of the contest was “Inspiring Your Community” with each student sharing what their vision is of the elements needed to inspire our community to dream big and prosper. Students focused on inspiring others through their work. Over 300 pieces of art were submitted from children ranging from kindergarten to 5th grade. The winning artwork will take the place of the question mark on South End landmark, the DCC water tower.

Ivy Greaner, chief operating officer of Ram Realty Services led into the announcement of the winners by expressing Ram’s thoughts on creating this contest. “We, as landlords, rarely get the opportunity to participate in an event that reaches so deeply into the community. We love that the Design Center is thought of as place full of creative energy and this tie with the children of Historic South End is there for all to see when you look up at the water tower. The energy and the creativity of these children exemplifies the vitality of the Design Center and our neighborhood. We are pleased to be a part of this community and thank Charlotte Center City Partners, CMS and the Historic South End for your contributions to making this contest happen.”

Ms. Greaner recognized the winner and two runner-ups at the event attended by CMS representatives, staff from Dilworth Elementary and Sedgefield Elementary, Charlotte Center City Partners, Arts & Science Council, Design Center tenants, and Historic South End neighbors. Speakers included Shari Meltzer, director of markting for Ram Realty Services; Moira Quinn, senior vice president and chief operating officer of Charlotte Center City Partners; and Linda Kiser, executive area director of the Central Learning Community for CMS.

The winners of the 2010 Design Center Children’s Water Tower Art Contest:

1st Place: Randy Logan, 5th grade, Sedgefield Elementary.

2nd Place: Astrid Bridgwood, 2nd grade, Dilworth Elementary.

3rd Place: Khamari Woodard, 3rd grade, Sedgefield Elementary.

The winning artwork will be replicated onto a large horizontal vinyl canvas and installed on the Design Center of the Carolinas water tower, a Historic South End landmark, in place of the current question mark. It will be installed mid March and will grace the tower for twelve months.

The winner of the contest was selected by a committee comprised of Ram representatives, CMS representatives, Design Center tenants, Historic South End neighbors, and Charlotte Center City Partners representatives. Ram Realty Services made a donation of $500 per school to be utilized by their art departments to purchase additional art supplies for their students.

  • Feb

Chapel Hill Development 140 West Franklin Sells First Condos

February 3, 2010

The Daily Tar Heel – By John Taylor

As other development projects in Chapel Hill experience delays, one local condominium project is on track to break ground in June.

140 West Franklin, a planned condominium development at the intersection of Franklin Street and Church Street in the current location of a town parking lot, has sold 40 of its 140 residences.

It’s a number developers say was a milestone target they didn’t expect to hit — not this early and not with as many local buyers.

At last week’s Chapel Hill-Carrboro Chamber of Commerce meeting, Peter Cummings of Ram Development, the developers of 140 West Franklin, spoke of the project’s success.

Construction is set to begin in June, but a finish date isn’t known, said Kim Counts, public relations director for Ram Development.

Shari Meltzer, Ram Development marketing director, said for the time being, they are going to celebrate their first achievement.

“We’re going to have some private events and banquets for the first 40,” Meltzer said.

She said the names of the first 40 property holders would be memorialized on the building’s cornerstone.

And for the groundbreaking in June, there will be an event for the entire community, she said.

The project has managed to stay on track while other developments have struggled. University Square has an uncertain timeline, and the environmentally-friendly Greenbridge has fallen behind schedule in the past.

Developers said lowering prices and gathering interest from future residents’ down payments has contributed to the recent success of 140 West Franklin.

According to a news release, one-bedroom homes that were planned to sell for $275,900 are now $180,000, and the cost of three-bedroom homes originally planned to go for $510,000 has been reduced to $320,000.

“The lower prices are a result of effective and carefully analyzed construction costs,” Meltzer said.

She said the construction company they hired offered a lower cost for building than anticipated.

Meltzer said 18 of the development’s 140 homes are designated for the town’s 15 percent affordable housing recommendation. Ideally, those residences could house people such as teachers, police officers and firefighters.

Developers expect many of the remaining residents to be University alumni, professors and Rams Club members in search of a place to stay on game day weekends.

The developers said 140 West Franklin aims to contribute to the environment of Franklin Street. A public, open-air plaza will run through the property.

“Part of the vision of the town is to create a development that fits in with the feel of Chapel Hill,” Meltzer said.

On the seventh floor, terrace homes will feature a gardening area for residents and a self-sustainable water system.

Developers said they hope the building will fit in with the culture of the town.

“We don’t just want a big building in the middle of Franklin Street,” Meltzer said.

Contact the City Editor at mailto:citydesk@unc.edu.

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