Innovation Place & AutoPark


The CU-ICAR Innovation Place & AutoPark is the first LEED-NC Gold certified state-funded project in South Carolina. Located at the core of CU-ICAR’s first phase of development, Technology Neighborhood I, the CU-ICAR Innovation Place & AutoPark houses the Partnership Offices, the TD Gallery and St. Francis Vrum Fitness Center. The Innovation Place project also has been recognized by the South Carolina Chapter of the American Institute of Architects with a 2009 Special Citation for Design Excellence.

Sustainable Sites

Landscape: Landscaping plays a significant part in water efficiency and biodiversity. The plant selection for the CU-ICAR Technology Neighborhood I Plaza includes native and adaptive species that do not require any permanent irrigation. Bosque Elm, Willow Oak, Tulip Poplar and Carex are all examples of plants that are tolerant of this region’s warm, humid climate. Extensive native grass and wildflower meadows are designed to filter storm water as well as provide habitat for wildlife throughout the year. Planting native species and minimizing turf grass also reduces the need for maintenance and fertilization.

Water Efficiency

Roof Garden: CU-ICAR Innovation Place is topped off with a sustainable green roof. The roof lowers the heat island effect of CU-ICAR Innovation Place and keeps the building cooler than a typical roofing application. The green roof also collects rainwater in a multilayer drainage system allowing the native grasses and perennials to thrive 55 feet above the ground.

Energy and Atmosphere

Lighting: CU-ICAR Innovation Place incorporates abundant natural light into all occupied spaces. Sunshade devices are also used on the south and east façades to minimize glare and provide flexibility to the building occupants. The interior lights use high-efficiency florescent bulbs that conserve energy and transmit less heat into the space and are controlled by motion sensitive occupancy sensors.

Indoor Environment Quality

Indoor Air Quality: All occupied spaces in CU-ICAR Innovation Place are supplied with pre-conditioned air. To make sure the air is of the highest quality, carbon dioxide monitors are located throughout the building. Additionally, all adhesives, sealants, paints, coatings and composite wood products and carpets meet the safety standard for low VOCs (volatile organic compounds).

Materials and Resources

Construction Waste Management: 93% of all construction waste was recycled including concrete, asphalt, paper, metal and cardboard. Over 345 Tons of waste was recycled.

LEED-NC® v2.1 Gold 2009 – Building Statistics

Completion Date: May 2007
Cost: $21.6 Million
Size: 20,000 square feet occupied and 1,200 parking spaces
Footprint: 72,000 square feet
Construction Type: Institutional
Use Group: Office and Campus Amenities
Lot Size: 3.3 acres
Occupancy: 20