McMillin's Eastern Urban Center Receives Leed Distinction -- Only San Diego County Project to be Part of Pilot Focus Group

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The Corky McMillin Companies' upcoming Eastern Urban Center has been accepted for the pilot program for the U.S. Green Building Council's newest LEED category of Neighborhood Development.

The fact that the EUC was the only pilot project in the San Diego region to be selected by LEED for the focus study is a credit to the sustainability concepts already integrated into the land planning and also shows the potential the project has going forward

The Corky McMillin Companies' upcoming Eastern Urban Center in Chula Vista, Calif., has been accepted for the pilot program for the U.S. Green Building Council's newest LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) category of Neighborhood Development, according to Lisa Johnson, director of community relations.

Existing LEED programs have a proven track record of encouraging the implementation of green and sustainable practices, such as increasing energy and water efficiency and improving indoor air quality, into building construction. The new Neighborhood Development category will recognize projects that build on these concepts and integrate them with the combined principles of smart growth and new urbanism to create communities that reduce automobile dependency, promote pedestrian activity, improve air quality, decrease polluted storm water runoff, and are generally more livable and sustainable for people of all income levels.

The U.S. Green Building Council, in partnership with the Natural Defense Council and the Congress for New Urbanism, have developed a set of standards and established a rating system to assess projects utilizing these environmentally superior development practices. As a participant in the program, McMillin has set it as a goal to have their Eastern Urban Center certified at one of the four LEED levels (certified, silver, gold or platinum).

"Everyone at McMillin believes in the importance of building green, and this certification only strengthens our commitment toward creating sustainable projects," Johnson said.

The Corky McMillin Companies is currently in the early stages of development on its Eastern Urban Center, which will create an urban epicenter in the middle of the suburban 23,000-acre Otay Ranch community in eastern Chula Vista. McMillin's development will comprise nearly 210 acres. The EUC is currently being designed to include over 3.4 million square feet of commercial space (office, civic and retail) and approximately 3,000 multifamily housing units. Located along the recently opened South Bay Expressway between Birch Road and Hunte Parkway, the EUC will have great visibility and accessibility to residents of Otay Ranch and the entire border region.

A total of 238 projects in six countries received entrance into the LEED Neighborhood Development pilot program. Additionally, the EUC is one of only eight projects in California -- 30 worldwide -- selected by the LEED Neighborhood Development Core Committee to be part of a focus group. Focus group projects are asked to provide an elevated degree of feedback concerning the pilot program while earning advancement in the certification queue of the 238 pilot projects.

"The fact that the EUC was the only pilot project in the San Diego region to be selected by LEED for the focus study is a credit to the sustainability concepts already integrated into the land planning and also shows the potential the project has going forward," said Todd Galarneau, McMillin's project manager for the EUC. "Creating sustainable communities today means stepping out of the four walls of a structure and taking into account the surrounding environment in making important building decisions."

Founded in 1960 by the late Corky McMillin, one of California's most honored community builders and civic leaders, the McMillin family business repeatedly earns top rankings for excellence among both the public and building industry peers. The firm is led today by Corky's two sons, Scott and Mark, both of whom have been active in company leadership roles for nearly three decades. The primary lines of business in The Corky McMillin Companies, are McMillin Land Development, McMillin Commercial and McMillin Homes. All three entities will be involved in the creation of Chula Vista's new Eastern Urban Center.

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