Exceptional Shopping Centre design to be recognised and celebrated

Robyn Self, Director of Plan-It Design.
Robyn Self, Director of Plan-It Design.

Exceptional Shopping Centre and retail design deserves recognition and should be celebrated. This is the main aim of the highly-anticipated Retail, Design and Development Awards (RDDA) hosted by the South African Council of Shopping Centres (SACSC).

In the world of retail design, it’s not only about all things attractive, all things inviting and the plethora of shopping centres and retailers to choose from. It is about finding the fine lines between architecture, interior design, graphic design, marketing, advertising, ergonomics and bringing them together to create seamless harmony. This is no easy feat-it’s a science and an art.

The RDDA winners are awarded annually to entrants that display this seamless harmony of design excellence, innovation and environmental consciousness. This includes instore design, centre redevelopments, expansions of existing shopping centres and development of new centres. The 2017 RDDAs are officially open. Sponsored by Nedbank Corporate and Investment Banking (NCIB), the 2017 RDDA entrants in the various categories are urged to submit their entries of work completed between November 2015 to May 2017 before June 28, 2017.

Chief Executive Officer for the South African Council of Shopping Centres (SACSC) Amanda Stops said that Shopping Centres and Retailers have become more dynamic over recent years. “South Africa remains world class in terms of the types of centres and retailers that we have designed and produced. Judging the awards have become progressively more difficult as we see even more innovation over the years. I would like to wish all the entrants well for this year’s RDDAs. I am exceptionally excited to see what this year brings,” she said.

In the 2016 RDDAs, Robyn Self the Director of Plan-It Design, took home the Store Design Under 1000 square meters Award for the ‘This Way Out’ adventure-sport store in Buiten Street, Cape Town. “The brief was to create an inside space for outside beings’-showcasing lifestyle sports products, apparel and accessories with the focus on mountain biking, trail running, yachting and climbing. An old heritage building used as a coffee grinding factory in down-town Cape Town was found. We had one month to develop and design this new store concept before the grand opening scheduled to take place just before the launch of the Maserati Yacht Week”.

“Working with the main product of Bikes, our personal experience browsing in bike shops lead us to create a stunning custom-made swiveling bicycle display frame that not only created a series of room dividers between Coffee Shop, apparel, accessories and point of sale area, but framed the high-end bikes as ‘art’ as well as replicated the store’s logo with square detail. Since the winning the award, Plan It Design has received many mentions. The award assisted with further marketing and showcasing our capabilities,” she said.

Plan-It Design’s work for the ‘This Way Out’ store in Buiten Street, Cape Town, was then selected as a Honouree in the 2017 International Council of Shopping Centres (ICSC) VIVA Retail Awards Competition. Judged by a panel of leading industry experts, winners of the VIVA category were recognised at a glamourous event held on Sunday, May 21, 2017 at the Westgate Hotel during the ICSC’s annual RECon Conference in Las Vegas.

Entry categories:

 Category A: New developments

  • Large Centres- (greater than 60 000m² GLA)
  • Medium Centres- (20 001m2 – 60 000m2 GLA)
  • Small Centres- (Less than 20 000m² GLA)

Category B: Renovation/Expansion

  • Large Centres- (greater than 60 000m² GLA)
  • Medium Centres- (20 001m2 – 60 000m2 GLA)
  • Small Centres- (Less than 20 000m² GLA)

Category C: Retail Design – Store or Restaurant

  • All Stores and Restaurants Within Shopping Centres

Category D: International

  • All Centres Outside South Africa (In Africa)

All aspects of the shopping centre and store/restaurant design and development will be taken into account, including:

  • The retail mix
  • The development costs and returns
  • Design resolution
  • Innovation
  • Appropriateness to the market
  • The materials/techniques used in the construction and design
  • Sustainability
  • Green innovation and effectiveness

2016 winners:

Category A: New developments

  •  Large Centres- (greater than 60 000m² GLA): Mall of Africa
  • Medium Centres- (20 001m2 – 60 000m2 GLA): Dainfern Square
  •  Small Centres- (Less than 20 000m² GLA): Riverside Shopping Centre