CHARLOTTE, N.C., Sept. 23, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK) today celebrated the grand opening of its corporate headquarters in the new Duke Energy Center at 550 South Tryon St.
Approximately 80 guests – comprised of local and state officials, business and civic leaders, and other community members – helped commemorate the milestone at a gathering on the 46th floor, the first of a three-story open-air atrium atop the LEED-Platinum skyscraper.
Remarks delivered by Duke Energy CEO Jim Rogers and others cited the numerous energy-efficient attributes of the building and the company's 22 leased floors. The panoramic view, however, stole the show.
According to Rogers, the view is a metaphor for a vision of Charlotte that is gaining traction among the region's leaders.
"Today isn't just a Duke Energy celebration, it's a celebration of a community coming together once again to reshape the future of our city and our region," he said. "Today is also an opportunity to recognize the many visionaries who made this possible."
Rogers spoke of the contributions of Bill Lee, Bob Bertges, Sandra and Leon Levine, Hugh McColl, John Belk, Ed Crutchfield and others who "understood and embraced Charlotte as a special place because of the caliber of people here."
Rogers reaffirmed Duke Energy's commitment to supporting the growth and vitality of the region.
"One area we value greatly is environmental stewardship," he said. "We recently received LEED Platinum certification for the first phase of our workspace in this building." Platinum is the highest of four level reflecting the building's sustainability and energy efficiency.
"Our Platinum designation complements the fact that the Duke Energy Center is the first high-rise office tower in the nation to receive LEED Core and Shell Platinum certification," Rogers said. He credited Bertges and Wells Fargo, owner of the building, for that accomplishment.
"We all hope the new Duke Energy Center will serve as a catalyst for other buildings, businesses and communities throughout the state and country to embrace design principles that are environmentally sound," Rogers said.
The building has assumed the name Duke Energy Center because the company is leasing approximately 500,000 square feet and houses its executive offices. The former Energy Center, which will primarily serve Duke Energy Carolinas operations, will be called 526 South Church.
The corporation has designed its new corporate office space using Workplace of the Future (WOF) principles to provide employees with some of the most modern, efficient and sustainable working conditions in the country. These principles incorporate open and collaborative work environments, less energy and water usage, and broad use of natural light throughout workspaces.
Although employees began moving into the building last year, the transition will continue on a sequenced schedule through early- to mid-2012. The company will occupy floors 15 through 22 and 36 through 48.
Duke Energy is a Fortune 500 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available on the Internet at: www.duke-energy.com.
SOURCE Duke Energy