News

Uncommon Common Areas

BY Katherine Boccaccio

As attention has turned from enclosed malls to open-air shopping centers, all eyes this December are on open-air holiday decor—and for good reason. The common space in a lifestyle center presents a creative canvas that is as much about challenge as it is about opportunity.

Exactly one year after Cleveland-based Forest City’s 1.2 million-sq.-ft. lifestyle center Northfield Stapleton in Denver debuted a one-of-a-kind holiday light show, the extravagant program encored this year on Nov. 17 at Northfield Stapleton, and an adapted version premiered on Nov. 18 at the company’s new town center The Promenade Boling-brook, in Bolingbrook, Ill. Both shows will run through Dec. 31.

Computer-controlled and choreographed to the thunderous sounds of the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, “Symphony in Lights” at both centers has involved intense collaboration, miles of electrical wire and steel cable, thousands of ornaments and hundreds of thousands of LED lights (see sidebar). The 2006 Northfield show was conceived by Forest City’s VP of marketing Jane Lisy, who was inspired by the nationally publicized holiday light and music show designed by artist Carson Williams for his Mason, Ohio, home.

“We were challenged to create a holiday attraction for our new Northfield Stapleton center that wasn’t already being done in the Denver area,” said Lisy.

Symphony in Lights was the answer. The unique, energy-efficient holiday light show was programmed and choreographed by Williams, and all design and construction was handled by Scotch Plains, N.J.-based Parker 3D. According to John Carter, design director, the greatest challenge to executing a program of this magnitude is the sheer coordination of it all.

Symphony in Lights, Backstage

While the public holiday light shows illuminating both Northfield Stapleton in Denver and The Promenade Boling-brook near Chicago this month both march to the beat of the Trans-Siberian Orchestra and both feature 250,000 LED lights, each display has differences.

Northfield Stapleton features:

More than 30 lighted trees ranging in size from 4 ft. to 36 ft. tall;

Nine lighted wreaths from 4 ft. to 10 ft. tall;

Aquarter mile of garland;

6,000 ornaments; and

More than 60 miles of electrical wire.

Promenade Bolingbrook features:

40 huge snowflakes that dance around a 50-ft. tree in the central gathering area;

8,000 lbs. of holiday decor;

Enough pine needles that, if stretched end to end, would reach Cleveland; and

47,000-plus miles of copper wire to run the circuits.

The use of LED lights in both shows allows extraordinary energy efficiency—each program runs on the amount of energy used in a typical American home.

“We’re talking about hundreds of people working in different locations around the U.S. I get my metal done in Alabama, my trees are made in Florida, my hightech electronics are made on Long Island [N.Y.], and my programmer is in Cincinnati,” he said. “It’s all these different ant farms that come together. And it’s a real orchestration challenge.”

Carter is best known for the department store windows he designed in New York City (among them Saks, Macy’s and Lord & Taylor), but applying his design technology and holiday decor expertise to town-center proportions has prompted him to think in larger-than-life scale.

“Both Northfield Stapleton and Promenade Bolingbrook feature football-sized displays,” he said, “with 250,000 LED lights embedded in thousands of feet of holiday foliage.”

keyboard_arrow_downCOMMENTS

Leave a Reply

S.Gacho says:
Mar-19-2013 04:20 am

It is nice to consider a mall
It is nice to consider a mall without air conditioned if and only if the place is cold. We have one here in the Philippines, Baguio City does not have air cons on their malls. - Michael Courouleau

S.Gacho says:
Mar-19-2013 04:20 am

It is nice to consider a mall without air conditioned if and only if the place is cold. We have one here in the Philippines, Baguio City does not have air cons on their malls. - Michael Courouleau

Polls

Consumer confidence is high. Is that reflected in your stores’ revenues?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...
News

CompUSA may get a new look

BY CSA STAFF

ADDISON, Tx. After opening a new format store last month, CompUSA may be changing the format of its other stores, depending on customer demand and product interest.

According to reports, the elements found in the prototype store, located in Texas, will be incorporated into other CompUSA locations across the United States.

The nearly 7,700 square-ft. relocation site includes an Apple shop featuring Mac computers, iPods and Apple accessories, and a full-length LCD TV wall.

Additional expansions include extended gaming, which includes an entire wall devoted to the Nintendo Wii, PlayStation3 and Xbox 360 gaming platforms, plus a PC gaming setup to test equipment and play new titles.

While businesses can get their share of support with a specialized services section, all consumers can visit the store’s redesigned IT support area.

“This new store aligns CompUSA’s vision to better serve its three core customers, the technology enthusiast, educated professional and small and medium businesses,” said Gabriela Villalobos, the retailer’s sales and operations evp.

CompUSA announced in April that it would narrow its focus to three core customer groups rather than try to serve a mass audience.

The move was part of a comprehensive restructuring, initiated last February, that included an overhaul of senior management and the closure of half its store base as the privately held chain looked to improve sales and profitability.

keyboard_arrow_downCOMMENTS

Leave a Reply

No comments found

Polls

Consumer confidence is high. Is that reflected in your stores’ revenues?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...
News

Walgreens withdraws from CVS provider plans

BY CSA STAFF

DEERFIELD, Ill. After many months of talks over low and below-market payment rates by CVS Caremark for four prescription plans, Walgreens has withdrawn as a pharmacy provider from the plans.

Patients affected include members of prescription benefit plans managed by CVS Caremark for ArcelorMittal, Johnson Controls, Progressive Casualty Insurance and Wisconsin Education Association Trust.

Most of the affected members live in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin.

Trent Taylor, president of Walgreens Health Services, the managed care division of Walgreens, released the following statement:

“This is not where we wanted negotiations to lead,” he said. “We’re sorry that our pharmacy patients and CVS Caremark’s clients are caught in the middle, and we’ll do all we can to ensure a smooth transition for our patients to another pharmacy. Meanwhile, we’ll continue to work on resolving this issue with CVS Caremark.

“Leaving a benefits plan is an extraordinary step for us, but it demonstrates how extraordinarily low our payments were from CVS Caremark. We can’t continue accepting reimbursement rates that are drastically below market, while offering patients needed special services such as 24-hour pharmacy access and drive-thru pharmacies.”

keyboard_arrow_downCOMMENTS

Leave a Reply

No comments found

Polls

Consumer confidence is high. Is that reflected in your stores’ revenues?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...