In an effort to meet potential tenants’ desire to create a strong sense of place within The Shops at Fallen Timbers, General Growth Properties enlisted the expertise of ka to develop a new kind of design focus for the open air center.
To begin the process, ka held a design charrette by dividing the team into four groups, each focusing on one of the primary portions of the site. Development of the “Lake District,” for example, created a central gathering area that is outfitted with a play area, mini amphitheater, fire pit and lawn area amidst a restaurant cluster.
Pedestrian markers are seen throughout the project and serve a multi-functional purpose. Located at each pedestrian passageway between buildings and marked with the project’s logo, each area is populated with benches, vending machines and lighting. These “markers” not only identify project entry points, but they also create a waiting place for visitors, in addition to respite and a place for visitors to get their bearings.
Extending the hardscape materials and lighting fixtures used on the rest of the project to the plazas in front of each helped to tie the department stores’ architecture into the aesthetics of the project. The restaurants also utilized these design features to assimilate into the project’s overall look and feel.
Situated on part of a 450-acre site, The Shops at Fallen Timbers is evocative of a Midwestern Main Street and provides visitors with that sense of place that the owner and tenants were searching for.
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