shopping centre

shopping centre
(also esp AmE shopping mall, mall) n
a large building or covered area containing many different shops. Shopping centres may also have their own car parks, restaurants, banks and other services.

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also called  shopping mall , or  shopping plaza 

      20th-century adaptation of the historical marketplace, with accommodation made for automobiles. A shopping centre is a collection of independent retail stores, services, and a parking area conceived, constructed, and maintained by a management firm as a unit. Shopping centres may also contain restaurants, banks, theatres, professional offices, service stations, and other establishments.

      Aspects considered by planners when a shopping centre is to be built include feasibility of the site in terms of the community's ability to support a centre; adequate vehicular access; and size, access, and topography of the site, as well as availability of utilities, zoning laws, and land use in the immediate area. Economic conditions of the area, the sociology of the region, and local commercial competition and attitudes determine the size of centre that can be supported and the kind of stores acceptable to a given locale.

      Shopping centres are generally of neighbourhood, community, or regional scope. The smallest type, the neighbourhood centre, usually has a supermarket as a focus, with daily convenience shops such as a drugstore, shoe repair, laundry, and dry cleaner accompanying it. Such a centre can usually serve 2,500 to 40,000 people within a six-minute drive.

      The community shopping centre contains all of the above-mentioned services in addition to a medium-sized department store or variety store, which acts, with the supermarket, as a focus. Wearing apparel, appliance sales, and repair stores are also found here. This centre will normally serve 40,000 to 150,000 people.

 The regional shopping centre provides a full range of shopping services comparable to those found in a small central business district. It is built around at least one full-size department store and often several; specialty shops and boutiques are numerous, and there are usually several restaurants and perhaps a motion-picture theatre. Services for the immediate day-to-day needs are minimized. It will serve as many as 150,000 or even 400,000 or more people. On larger sites motels, medical centres, or office buildings may also be provided.

      Car-parking facilities are a major consideration in shopping-centre design. The size and scope of the centre, the type of tenant, and the economics of the area partially determine parking needs, but it has been found that a ratio of 5.5 parking spaces per 1,000 square feet of leasable space is usually adequate. Access to the lots must be broad and easy enough to avoid traffic jams. On hilly sites the use of parking and service decks apart from the main consumer level is often advantageous.

      Pedestrian and vehicular circulation within the centre are prime design considerations and should be kept physically separate as much as possible. Exceptions to this rule are the satellite placement of auto-accessory stores, movie theatres, and drive-in banks.

      The first unified shopping mall, Country Club Plaza, founded by the J.C. Nichols Company, opened near Kansas City, Mo., in 1922. The first enclosed mall opened near Minneapolis, Minn., in 1956. In the 1980s there developed “megamalls,” such as the West Edmonton Mall in Alberta, Can. (opened in 1981), which contained not only more than 800 stores vending everything from footwear to automobiles but also restaurants, a hotel, an amusement park, a miniature-golf course, a church, a “water park” for sunbathing and surfing, a zoo, a 438-foot-long lake, and, scattered about, more than 500 kinds of trees.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • shopping centre — ➔ centre * * * shopping centre UK US UK (US shopping center) noun [C] (US also shopping mall) COMMERCE ► a large building or a group of buildings containing a lot of different stores: »out of town shopping centres …   Financial and business terms

  • shopping centre — shopping centres N COUNT A shopping centre is a specially built area containing a lot of different shops. The new shopping centre was constructed at a cost of 1.1 million. (in AM, use shopping center) …   English dictionary

  • shopping centre — shopping .centre BrE shopping center AmE n a group of shops together in one area, often in one large building …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • shopping centre — ► NOUN ▪ an area or complex of shops …   English terms dictionary

  • shopping centre — noun mercantile establishment consisting of a carefully landscaped complex of shops representing leading merchandisers; usually includes restaurants and a convenient parking area; a modern version of the traditional marketplace a good plaza… …   Useful english dictionary

  • shopping centre — (AmE shopping center) noun ⇨ See also ↑mall ADJECTIVE ▪ big, huge, large, major ▪ small ▪ main, principal …   Collocations dictionary

  • shopping centre — UK / US noun [countable] Word forms shopping centre : singular shopping centre plural shopping centres an area where a group of different shops and businesses such as banks and restaurants are all built next to each other …   English dictionary

  • shopping centre — {{#}}{{LM S44758}}{{〓}} {{[}}shopping centre{{]}} {{■}}(ing.){{□}} {{《}}▍ s.m.{{》}} Centro comercial que agrupa a diversas tiendas de distintos tipos. {{★}}{{\}}PRONUNCIACIÓN:{{/}} [chópin sénter], con ch suave. {{★}}{{\}}ORTOGRAFÍA:{{/}} Por ser …   Diccionario de uso del español actual con sinónimos y antónimos

  • shopping centre — noun a) A large retail outlet b) An area, either enclosed or unenclosed, hosting multiple retail establishments Syn: shopping mall …   Wiktionary

  • shopping centre — BrE, shopping center AmE noun (C) a group of shops built together in one area, often under one roof …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

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