Project type: Retail
Location: Wuhan, China
Status: Concept Design Proposal
In our previous design for the Wanda Shoppingmall in Shanghai Baoshan we explored the opportunities to enhance the design quality by modifying the spatial experience rather than limiting the interior design services to surface treatments. In Shanghai we used minor alterations of the floor plans and introduced balconies into the atrium and arcade voids. The effect was a stunning three-dimensional space that felt almost like in motion; a radical departure from the classical repetitive rectangular voids.
This design for the shoppingmall in Wuhan with its height of six floors, offers the chance to explore this concept further. The given proportions are rather narrow and the extreme height of the six floor atriums and arcades offer the chance to create long views through layers of shifting floor plates.
The openings in the arcade floor plates are slightly modified to become distorted rectangles with filleted corners. The plates around the atriums have been altered from the pure circular shapes to large triangles with wide filleting radii. On each floor level the plate modifications are offset from each other with the result that the entire space appears to be set into motion.
The outlines of the shop facades are slightly modified as well, following the moves of the voids, expressing motion, versus static repetition of rectangular and parallel surfaces. The roof structure enhances this concept. While typically the arcade roofs are split into separate segments between the atria and the arcades, we propose a continuous roof structure that modifies its height and span along the entire length of the shopping mall. Like the floor plates, the section of the roof structure follows a distorted rectangular profile. With the height and angle of its three top sides continuously changing, and thus creating a dynamic wavy appearance (to rationalize the construction process we currently limited the sections along the arcade roofs to five alternating shapes).
The notion of motion, and “speed” is further emphasized by the floor pattern which features ribbon like intarsia which swing along the arcades and through the atria in curvilinear amplitudes. Linear light coves along the shop facades and ceilings add to the impression of “speed”.
The overall materiality of our design proposal follows “the Macintosh esthetic” of silverish aluminum ceilings with filleted corners and slightly grey toned glass railings. A slick technical appearance targeting the employees of the abundant office high-rises surrounding location. A shopping mall design for high income, young urban professionals.