A mall may be summarized as efficient retail space, but the idea of a Community Mall is a much more considered concept. The Noro Mall project was conceptualized as Cambodia had just begun to embrace such a concept, in the aftermath of TK Avenue and Eden Garden.
A community mall offers a space for the people that frequent it, providing more than just purchases and transactions but rather a multi-functional area to be celebrated and, in turn, enhance the lifestyles of those that utilize it.
Originally, the Community Mall was going to be a “destination”. An urban oasis in the middle of a concrete jungle, offering elements of the outdoors harmoniously inside the space. This would create areas of relaxation and respite, for individuals and families within a typically hectic area of the city; A key aim was to create a zen space that didn’t require anyone to leave the city.
The right location unlocks potential. With three main roads connected to the space, accessibility creates a competitive advantage and positions the project as a major ‘attraction’ in the neighborhood.
To fulfill the vision succinctly, the building had to be unique. It had to complement the urban landscape, rather than take away from it. To achieve this, lush green curtain-like gardens overhang from the façade. The exterior structure and design embodies the concept of dynamics through movement, flows, connection, and raw materials; Inspiration from the free flowing pedestrian traffic breathes through the design.
Because of the lack of green community spaces in the city’s urban areas, we utilized the porosity of the building to allow for a naturally ventilated, more sustainable, and energy efficient build, which also allows more sunlight to enter the space. This fluid usage of open space requires less need for air-conditioning, contributing to a greener Cambodia.
The structure of the building is a key element of the design, giving elements of confidence, boldness and strength through it’s raw and exposed features. The design concept pays homage to Vann Molyvann’s building structures.
The exposed concrete amongst the building balances and harmonizes with the natural environment, and has the advantage of using less paint. Each consideration like such impacts more than the financing of a project, but the longevity of a building for future generations.
Drawing on our principles, we take a human approach by prioritizing openness and welcoming aspects, and in such, we created areas to bring people together. When traveling along Norodom Blvd, there is a continuity from the street with the block and into the entrance of the mall. This creates a commanding yet friendly encouragement to enter the space.
The interior balances the rawness of the building, bringing together the environment, nature and people in a harmonious fashion. The mall design has meticulous focus on the cutout spaces that are both complementary yet contrasting, creating urban edges between the community and retail spaces, while also utilizing the missing concrete sections of the design.
The circulation blends well with the surrounding, flowing and fading like a rhythm of endless surrounded stairs. This encourages people to move around the mall in fluid fashion, whether it be biking or walking.
Noro Mall wasn’t built to simply be used by people, it was built for people.
Bringing excitement through nature, the green aspect of the building cascades throughout the interior and exterior from top to bottom. We had the opportunity to create noticeable curiosity, generated by twisting boxes for a structural breakthrough from traditional design.