Owner says new store in former movie theater will emphasize energy efficiency

Half-Moon Outfitters owner Beezer Molten is breathing new, and renewable, life into the building that once housed South Windermere Cinema.

Vacant since the end of August, the former movie theater is to reopen June 15 as the flagship store of Charleston-based Half-Moon Outfitters, but not before it undergoes an "uber-green" renovation.

Molten, whose company targets kayakers, backpackers, hikers and other outdoor-sports enthusiasts, signed a five-year lease with South Windermere Shopping Center owner Gould and Co.

"We were sorry to see the theater leave, but it was time for a change," said Mark Mizell of the Sadler Group, which handles leasing for the Folly Road shopping center. "It was important for us to get a local tenant, and Half-Moon is the perfect fit."

As part of the deal, Molten said, the Boston-based property owner has agreed to insulate the building beyond what is required and install the most efficient fluorescent lights and windows available.

Once Molten is allowed to move in April 1, he said, everything from the paint to the fixtures will be as recycled and renewable as possible.

Half-Moon's distribution center in North Charleston is the first structure in South Carolina to earn the top platinum status from the U.S. Green Building Council's voluntary Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program, also known as LEED. It opened in July in a renovated building on East Montague Avenue.

"We can't ask a landlord to meet all of the efficiencies we met with the distribution center in North Charleston," Molten said, "but the owner of the building has been extremely reasonable and understanding about our vision and desire to be environmentally sensitive."

He said he can't have the South Windermere location verified for a LEED rating because he does not own the building, "but we're doing everything we can to make it efficient."

Currently, Half-Moon Outfitters does not have a true flagship store because of space limitations at its existing locations, Molten said. With 10,000 square feet to work with, the new South Windermere store will have enough room to offer every product for every sport and outdoor activity the company represents.

Half-Moon Outfitters has five retail stores in downtown Charleston, Mount Pleasant, Columbia, Greenville and Savannah. It also operates an online store at www.halfmoonoutfitters.com.