As disposable incomes are getting higher, consumers are getting more mature in demanding a luxurious lifestyle. It has, therefore, become a top priority for mall developers and architects to design their property innovatively to attract and keep customers involved at the mall – as it is believed, “Innovations drive growth and development.”
Most of the upcoming malls are based on the concept of contemporary design with added elements of classical architecture. Natural and manufactured materials provide a cohesive and consistent architectural character that helps to unify the mall visually. Building surfaces should ideally be light in colour.
Interesting alignment of landscape islands and driveways along with canopies and trellises, facilitating pedestrian traffic is ideal for malls with large spaces. For malls with small parking spaces, the traffic should be facilitated with multiplex egress and ingress points.
Pick the right mix
Tenant mix or brand mix is an area where one simply cannot afford to go wrong. Mall developers should first identify their anchor tenants and then build their tenant mix around it. Formulating the right tenant mix based on zoning not only helps to attract and retain shoppers by offering them multiple choices, but also enables smooth movement of shoppers within the mall, avoiding clusters and bottleneck.
Clustering is a process of gathering tenants of the same type into the same location. The developers can have clusters in all retail groups so that customers have an access to a variety of options in a single category without any inconvenience. Sensible bundling of tenancies will improve customer experience at a retail property. Also, malls and movie theatres have a symbiotic relationship. When there is a multiplex within a mall, there’s always something to do before and after a movie.
State of the art amenities
Mall spaces should ideally be swamped with F&B outlets on both sides, with informal seating spaces and water features forming an ideal hang-out space for all age-groups. Design should match international standards not only with its unique architecture but also with thoughtfulness towards providing best of facilities.
Food court options should always be in sync with the tenant mix. It should be an inviting space and have options of a few fine dining restaurants along with fast food chains to complement the tenants and be a pleasant experience for the customers.
Mall designers are now creating zones catering to different audiences. Special food zones, play areas, business centers, etc. are some innovations now incorporated. To make the visit more personalised, carefully chosen textures using stones, wood, strategically placed props and furniture, and the right lighting helps create a relaxed feel.
Simple steps that contribute towards environmental consciousness should be taken. These give added value to a mall in this age of environment conscious citizens.
Keep it comfortable
Roofing systems should comprise of excellent acoustical and heat insulation values. Tiles for heat reduction and wall panels for heat insulation should be used while building a mall.
Design for a better future
To increase the energy saving potential, occupancy based and timer based sensors should be installed. The upward out-door lighting should be limited, hence safeguarding the nocturnal life of the birds and insects.
The design and architecture of a mall can transform a simple shopping trip into a social event. Carefully designed malls also cater to the requirements of today’s customer that is environment conscious.