• Smoke Signals: The 279-unit Alaire in Rockville, Md., is one of the first apartment communities in the state to ban smoking in both public and private spaces. Additional smoke-free residential buildings are expected to follow throughout the country.
    Smoke Signals: The 279-unit Alaire in Rockville, Md., is one of the first apartment communities in the state to ban smoking in both public and private spaces. Additional smoke-free residential buildings are expected to follow throughout the country.

Smoke-free apartment buildings are joining an increasingly long list of places—restaurants, bars, hotels, and hospitals—where puffing is no longer allowed.

The Alaire—comprised of two buildings with 279 luxury units, retail/restaurant space, and a garage—opened this past March in Rockville, Md. The Alaire is among the state’s first apartment buildings to include a lease provision banning smoking in both public and private quarters. Those who smoke risk eviction, says Tony Greenberg, a vice president and development manager at The JBG Cos. in Chevy Chase, Md., which developed The Alaire in a public-private partnership with Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority.

The building represents the first phase of Twinbrook Station, which, by 2025, is expected to transform 26 acres of commuter parking lots into 10 environmentally-friendly residential and commercial buildings and parks adjacent to the Twinbrook Metro Station.

A smoking ban is just one leading-edge environmental component of the property, says Susan Swift, director of community planning and development services for the City of Rockville. Designed by Calverton, Md.-based Grimm + Parker, The Alaire sits pretty on 6.5 landscaped acres and includes two types of green roofs (one with a reflective material and the other with vegetation); a 25-yard salt-water pool that eliminates chlorine; bicycle storage; low-VOC paints and materials; programmable thermostats; and a solar trash compactor and recycling kiosk. These features have earned the building a LEED Gold certification for Neighborhood Development.

To date, 25 percent of The Alaire’s one- and two-bedroom units are leased. Prices for the smallest unit, the 640-square-foot, one-bedroom, begin at $1,600 a month.