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Meredith Team Wins Highwoods Design Competition

Highwoods Properties, the largest owner and operator of suburban office properties in the Southeast and owner and developer of RBC Plaza, today announced that Meredith College interior design students Danielle Sundt and Lauren Hays have won the Highwoods sponsored RBC Plaza retail design competition. Highwoods presented the winning team with a check for $500 during a special presentation ceremony.
Stundt and Hays’ design, Akorn, was inspired by The City of Oaks. The concept boutique, targeting both men and women, included a mezzanine level along with a real oak tree in the center of the first floor.

“The students put together some incredible design concepts,” said Skip Hill, Highwoods Properties Raleigh division vice president. “Our team was very impressed with the research and creativity presented, and it has been a great learning experience for the students. This will certainly give potential customers some good ideas on what they can do in RBC Plaza’s retail space.”

Highwoods conducted public polling in the RBC Plaza retail space on Thursday, April 28. Considering the public’s opinion, the five-person judging panel consisting of real estate and design experts selected Akorn as the winner of the design competition.

“Working with an existing space and the many challenges it presents has been an incredible design experience for the students,” said Martha Burpitt, professor of human environmental sciences and Interior Design program coordinator, Meredith College. “Researching who the target market will be, the location and merchandise offered were the basis for the overriding concept, store name and store design. The students had a great experience with this design challenge.”

Highwoods announced this competition in March 18, 2011. Over the past several weeks, the students have been working on designs for this 2,200-square-foot retail space at Highwoods’ RBC Plaza, Raleigh’s tallest building.

About Meredith College
Chartered in 1891, Meredith College has grown to become one of the largest independent private women’s colleges in the U.S. The college’s undergraduate offerings include the Triangle area’s only interior design program accredited by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation. Meredith offers a comprehensive liberal arts undergraduate education, as well as coeducational graduate programs in business, nutrition and education.

About Highwoods Properties
Highwoods Properties, headquartered in Raleigh, North Carolina, is a publicly traded (NYSE:HIW) real estate investment trust (“REIT”) and a member of the S&P MidCap 400 Index. The Company is one of the largest owners and operators of office properties in the Southeast and provides leasing, management, development, construction and other customer-related services for its properties and for third parties. At March 31, 2011, Highwoods owned or had an interest in 329 in-service office, industrial and retail properties encompassing approximately 32.4 million square feet and owned 610 acres of development land. The Company’s properties and development land are located in Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia. For more information about Highwoods Properties, visit

Date Submitted: 2011-05-05

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