Check out this post-game analysis of the Los Angeles Dead Mall competition, which solicited bids for the redesign of derelict shopping malls.
Their design is a multi-level smorgasbord of stores and businesses to attract a wide range of tastes. The first floor is a "big box cathedral" that caters to "gathering types" with convenient one-stop shopping at stores like Kmart and Costco.
The second floor is geared towards wandering and browsing in a kasbah-style environment. In order to replicate a city, the design also leaves room for social interaction by cultivating the idea of a mall as a meeting place for groups that might be looking for a refuge. The mall would also be a mini city that never sleeps, with towers of restaurants, nightclubs and casinos serving the "raving culture."
"Part of the mall would be a new emergent public realm where people could meet to talk about culture," said Kahn. "They have an instant city. There is the skating culture and hip hop culture here, and there is no place for these subcultures. This place would make room for that."
The idea of a hub to exchange ideas was inspired by text messaging and wireless technology that can draw people together like a swarm of bees. In a recent tech incident, text messaging was used to spread news that Mariah Carey was on location in Tokyo. Within a short time, thousands of fans arrived at the scene.
(via Viridian List)