Land-Use Planning: A Shopping Center Phipps Shopping Plaza
Shopping centers are frequently constructed with inadequate total planning. Communities are quick to see the potential positive economic
spinoff of a shopping center being developed, but tend to downplay potential negative impacts of such development. Environmental considerations
are not always properly addressed, and often surface later as problems. To understand what environmental problems may arise from
the construction of a shopping center, it is necessary to analyze an existing or proposed facility
After surveying people at a local shopping mall, the student will:
1. Understand that land-use decisions may not always be carefully thought through.
2. Recognize that most types of land use may have unwanted or negative environmental results.
3. Understand the relationship between the development of shopping centers and the decline of central business districts.
1. Decide whether the whole class will go to the mall and interview respondents, or whether students will divide up into groups, survey
people, and report their results during the next lab class.
Conducting the survey:
2. Use the following questions as a basis for your survey. Add other questions that are pertinent to your situation.
3. When surveying people, be polite, and ask them if they would be willing to take a few minutes to answer some questions. Regardless
of their answer, thank them and wish them a good day.
4. Sample questions:
a. Did you live in this area before the shopping center was constructed?
b. If so, what was the area like before the shopping center was built?
c. What problems do you notice that are associated with the shopping center (noise, traffic, etc.)?
d. Is the shopping center's interior aesthetically pleasing to you?
e. Is the shopping center's exterior aesthetically pleasing to you?
178 Part 5 Lifestyle Choices
f. Do you feel crime in your neighborhood has changed with the construction of the shopping center?
g. Were you consulted in any way before the shopping center was built?
h. If so, in what way and by whom?
5. After the survey, construct a tally sheet with all answers, and bring this sheet to class.
Analysis of the shopping center:
6. Sometime before the next lab class, return to the shopping center, and look around. Answer the following questions, and be prepared
to discuss them in the next class.
a. Estimate the total area of impervious (e.g., concrete surfaces, parking lots, buildings, etc.) surfaces where water cannot seep into
b. Estimate the number and average height of trees in the shopping center.
c. How are the trees planted? In boxes, in beds, or in areas filled in with wood chips?
d. Estimate the percentage of the parking lot that is filled with cars.
e. Where does all the water that falls onto the shopping center drain into?
f. Is the area aesthetically pleasing to you? Why or why not?
180 Part 5 Lifestyle Choices
1. Did your respondents seem to feel positively about the mall?
2. What were some of the major problems respondents cited about having the mall in their community?
3. What environmental problems did you see that were associated with the mall (e.g., water runoff, aesthetics, wildlife, loss of
4. What functions does this mall play in this community?
5. How can the negative environmental problems associated with malls be minimized?
6. Are several small shopping centers better than one large one? Why or why not?
7. If you were designing a mall, what important factors would you incorporate that weren't included in this mall?
Exercise 22 Land-Use Planning: A Shopping Center 179
g. Were the roads leading to the mall there before the construction of the mall? Were additional roads built to accommodate the
additional traffic? Were existing roads widened?
h. What types of stores are in the mall? How many stores (total) are there?
i. Is there evidence that the mall was constructed where a farm, residential area, or open fields used to be?
j. Is there evidence that large trees were removed for the shopping center? If so, how could they have been incorporated into the
design of the mall, rather than being removed?
k. What type of wildlife is present at the mall?
The Mall at Stonecrest is designed as a collection of buildings arranged in a continuous, curvilinear configuration that forms an interior park. Textures support the premise of a collection of buildings and help to distinguish the spaces within the project. The roof line extends out to form a canopy over each of the five primary entrances and the food court, all with full-height curtain wall glass to enhance visibility of the interior spaces.
Pt. VI questions
Did your respondents seem to feel positive about the mall?
What were some of the major problems respondents cited about having the mall in their community?
What were the environmental problems associated with building this structure?
There was a dairy farm that used to be in place of the mall before it was there.
Said by the nice 68 year old European American lady.
What functions does this mall play in this community?
How can environmental problems minimized by the mall
Are several malls better than on mall? why?
In miss Swain opinion yes because they are more convenient and you can get in & get out.
How many stores?
There are quite a few malls even though it feels small and the types of stores are luxury and upscale all the way said by the two old ladies in Belk.
Evidence of trees?
There were no evidence of trees and there were no trees in the surrounding areas to do research on.
Did you live this area before the shopping center was constructed ?