Morningstar Law Group – Raleigh Law Firm – Durham NC Attorneys

We've Moved! Our Raleigh office is now located at 434 Fayetteville Street, Suite 2200, Raleigh, NC 27601.

Molly is a commercial real estate lawyer who assists clients with development and transactions. She represents owners and developers in connection with public/private developments, downtown redevelopment, land use and zoning issues, development agreements, purchase and sale transactions, and leasing. Her background in planning, including a master’s degree in city and regional planning, provides a valuable perspective on commercial real estate issues.

Molly previously served as the staff attorney for the American Planning Association in Washington, DC, as editor of a national publication for planners and as a staff to APA’s amicus curiae committee.

Molly began her legal career negotiating and drafting development, acquisition, easement, joint venture and financing agreements for private and public/private development in New York City. She also guided clients through city environmental and land use review procedures.

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  • Best Lawyers: Land Use and Zoning Law (2022-2024), Real Estate Law (2022-2024)
  • Business North Carolina’s Legal Elite: Real Estate (2024)

Representative Experience

  • Regularly represents owners and prospective developers to achieve zoning necessary to redevelop commercial and mixed-use properties in and near downtown Raleigh
  • Regularly secures variances and design alternates from the City of Raleigh for major developers
  • Negotiates public/private development agreements and land acquisition contracts for downtown redevelopment projects in North Carolina
  • Secured rezoning of a 30-acre site near downtown Raleigh for large-scale, mixed-use development and rezoning and annexation of a 530-acre site along NCDOT’s I-540 extension for residential and mixed-use development
  • Negotiated a long-term ground lease with the City of Raleigh on behalf of a sports facility developer
  • Negotiated and closed a multi-parcel downtown land swap with the Town of Chapel Hill for a mixed-use developer
  • Structured and negotiated development agreements, joint venture, property acquisition, and ongoing easement and management documents for development above existing state-owned railyard properties in New York

Presentations & Publications

  • Discussion of 2022 Study of the Impact of Bus Rapid Transit on Property Values“, WakeUp Wake County Transportation, Land Use & Housing Committee meeting. (March 1, 2023)
  • “Opportunity Zones Update.” CLE Presentation at Knowledge Uncorked. (April 2019)
  • Planning & Environmental Law: Editor-in-Chief (2011-2014)
  • Planning Magazine: wrote monthly legal news column (2011-2014)
  • “The Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem: Challenges for Regional Ecosystem Management”,. Environmental Management. Vol. 41, Issue 6, pp. 820-833. With H. Lynch, S. Hodge, C. Albert. (June 2008)
  • The New York Times: “The Replacements,” OpEd article with Daniel L. Shapiro (February 1, 2006)


  • Harvard Law School, J.D. (2006)
  • Ohio State University, Knowlton School of Architecture, Master of City and Regional Planning (1998)
  • Kenyon College, B.A., Economics, Concentration in Environmental Studies (1996) magna cum laude, with honors, with distinction


  • North Carolina State Bar (2015)
  • New York State Bar (2007)


  • City of Raleigh’s Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Commission: Commissioner (2017-2019)
  • WakeUP Wake County: Board Member (2017-present)
  • Passage Home: Board Member (2023 – present)