tvsdesign Principal and Retail expert Donna Childs was recently published in Shopping Centre News, giving her insight on what design and architectural elements make Million Square Feet Malls the wave for the future.
Challenges affecting design elements:
- Challenge: Big malls mean big spaces – a million square feet under claustrophobic ceilings with cramped corridors is bound to fail.
- Solution: Vertical development allows large amounts of retail space on limited land. Also, ‘Stacking’ different price points and merchandise zones on different levels permits a broader retail selection on a smaller geographic footprint.
- Challenge: Create an ambiance that really differentiates a mall from its competitors
- Solution: ‘Resort Retail’ – Providing a hospitality experience with the same kind of amenities you would find at a fine resort.
Some additional trends Donna discusses are:
- Dining and Entertainment areas – Mall dining should offer conventional fast food along with more healthy options and finer dining to suit varied demographics
- Million Square Feet Malls as Town Centers – When a mall becomes a ‘place’ that attracts shoppers even when they are not shopping, it can become a town center –a venue
- Million Square Feet Malls as an Entertainment Destination – Movie theatres are a huge traffic driver and can extend the time of a family in the centre. A mall will need to be an entertainment destination by 2017 to compete with the online marketplace.