Fight for Frontage: A Shopping Mall On a High Street

Alice Vialard, Tim Ingleby, Paul Ring

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Natural movement is defined as the pedestrian movement potentially generated by the configuration of the street network irrespective of any other factors (Hillier et al 1993). The structure of the urban fabric is considered to be the primary generator of movement, although attractors such as specific ‘land uses’ for example, might also act as factors in generating additional movement. Traditional shops along a high street build upon the potential provided by natural movement. Conversely, the concept of shopping malls is to create attraction through concentrated land-uses (retail density) allied to car accessibility (regardless of pedestrian accessibility). The spatial juxtaposition of these two retail models therefore challenges the way the syntactic structure of the street operates, resulting in multiple frontages and points of access that may pose conflicting demands and a sense of disorientation. The case study is a shopping mall located in the Newcastle City Centre, bordered on one side by the high street and on another by one of the main city squares. This ‘hybrid’ building has developed its own circulation system: it is publicly accessible but privately owned, which implies restricted accessibility over the course of the day and week. As such, accessibility is re-evaluated depending upon the nature of the internal open space (privately owned but, at times, publically accessible). Accessibility is measured at the city scale, and the neighbourhood scale inclusive and exclusive of the internal open space. It is also assessed by the volume of shoppers entering the shopping mall’s 20 separate entrances and is linked back to the syntactic structure of the streets. Finally, the impact of movement generated by street structure on retail located in the shopping mall is analysed through the layout of a department store that fronts both the shopping mall (internal frontage) while having also maintained its traditional frontage onto the high street (external frontage).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 11th International Space Syntax Symposium
EditorsTeresa Heitor, Miguel Serra, João Silva Pinelo, Maria Bacharel, Luísa Cannas Da Silva
Place of PublicationLisbon
PublisherInstituto Superior Técnico - Universidade de Lisboa
ISBN (Print)9789729899447
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2017
Event11th International Space Syntax Symposium - Lisbon, Lisbon, Portugal
Duration: 3 Jul 20177 Jul 2017


Conference11th International Space Syntax Symposium


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