January 17, 2005

More On The Difference Between Strip Malls And Lifestyle Centers

Westborough's Design Review Board members, seeking the look and feel of a traditional town center instead of a strip mall for a major redevelopment project, complained about a proposed plan thusly: They "fear the project as proposed looks too much like a mundane Shoppers World retail area and not enough like a quaint New England village they envision," notes today's MetroWest Daily News.

"Gorman Richardson Architects and Waterman Design Associates, the firms designing the project, told the board they too hope to achieve that type of atmosphere. They want to encourage people to spend time at the center instead of treating it like a regular shopping plaza where visitors go to and from their car to shop. "

Park once, then walk to many destinations -- enjoying a sense of place and a pedestrian-friendly streetscape, so shoppers want to stay and linger. Communities all around Framingham are getting this issue. So far, our town isn't. The "Golden Triangle" will become an increasingly less attractive regional shopping area compared with nearby retail centers, unless we understand what people want now, not what they wanted decades ago.

1 comment:

  1. Does anybody know about Lifestyle Center Redevelopment? What hppens to all of the "Bigger" Boxees
    close? Have cities entered in maintenance contracts to anticipate their demise
    in 10 or 15 years? Also, are their any examples of converting vacant "pre-lifestyle centers"
    into something viable and similiar to the concept?