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»Concept« Shopping

While retail shops in the city centres are fighting for survival, the competing shopping centres are often enjoying more popularity. Tastelessly decorated and filled with the same international chains, these malls deserve a bit of criticism. The kind of psychology that is used to pull in customers and get them to spend is explained by the internationally experienced dramatic advisor Christian Mikunda in the leading article of the next concept issue from DETAIL on the topic of »Shops and Retailing«. A selection of successful shopping centres proves that the planning does not always have to end in a gaudy spectacle rather it can also create architecture full of quality. This is exemplified by the Kaufhaus Tyrol (2,3) in Innsbruck from Chipperfield Architects – elegant and smaller scale, seamlessly integrated in the city. Its actual retail space of around 33,000 sqm is impressively hidden. With the »Stücki-Einkaufzentrum« (1) Architects Diener & Diener in Basel were confronted with a contradicting assignment. In a working class neighbourhood located on the edge of the city, a shopping centre with a hotel and office space was built on top of an old industrial area. Architects, media planners and landscape architects explain the building process of this huge project, which was difficult and challenging to integrate into the hard surroundings.

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