Park(ed) Mall

Carole Lévesque

Strip Appeal is an international ideas design competition, and traveling exhibit, intended to stimulate and showcase creative design proposals for the adaptive reuse of small-scale strip-malls. How might the small-scale strip be reinvented and redeveloped to local advantage? Simple and sturdy, what better adaptable typology than the small-scale strip. Any community can make the small-box their own.


In collaboration with Todd Ashton and Aumer Assaf of OCI Architecture

Jurry Runner up project


The Park(ed) mall retains the commercial activity that vibrant neighborhoods need, while removing the dependence on passenger vehicles, encouraging people to walk in their neighborhoods, crossing paths at the neighborhood stores and gathering at the park. How does it do this? By bringing the stores to you! Rather than getting in a car and drive across town to find the shop you need, the Strip Mall nearest you is replaced by a park. A docking station is located in the park to which specially customized trailers, the new homes of the stores in the old Strip Malls, pull up. The trailer hook up to the infrastructure, water, power, waste and telecom available in the dock and open for business.


Within the pattern of typical suburban sprawl, there is a generally one strip mall located in each neighborhood and within the half-kilometer distance most people feel comfortable walking to services. The paradox is that though the distribution of these Strip Mall sis such that they could serve as the central points of pedestrian-oriented neighborhoods, they actually serve a widely dispersed car-driven population. With only 5-8 specialized enterprises housed at each Strip Mall, people need to travel to distant neighborhoods to satisfy their needs, as shown in the diagram below. The proposal of the Park(ed) Mall is to replace the Strip Mall in four or more adjacent neighborhoods, housing the existing shops in the new mobile trailers, and then scheduling them so the full variety of goods and services on offer visit each site at least once a week, bringing all the shops within easy walking distance in each neighborhood.


Current vacancies and duplication of shop type sin existing Strip Malls can be eliminated, allowing for one day a week at each site to be returned to the community as a Park(ed)-free day, where the dock and its infrastructure are available to the community for impromptu or organized gatherings, for kids to play or for a simple stroll through a park.