[ Space Available ] reinventing the suburban strip mall
Koesters, Haley Ana
Colopy, Andrew; Wittenberg, Gordon
Master of Architecture
The thesis investigates the urban periphery as it relates to ideas of architectural significance, legibility, and identity. It is focused on reimagining the traditional strip mall typology through considering its formal language, program, and relationship to the surrounding context. Throughout the country strip malls are commonly underused and falling into states of foreclosure and vacancy as a response to online competition. The strip mall is now transforming from convenience driven retail to quality based services. In conjunction, the role of the individually owned vehicle is diminishing, allowing for previously zoned parking to be reclaimed for the pedestrian. The existing strip malls are still economically and functionally viable, but a new configuration of the current components is needed to revitalize and extend their use. The boundless edge of the strip mall can evolve to produce more intimate spaces of connectivity and gathering, improving the general experience of this generic condition.