On the Bull’s Eye

June 1, 2003
One vacant store is another’s ‘Target’
HONORABLE MENTION: Target “Mall 205, Portland, ORWhen Montgomery Ward announced it was quitting business in early 2001, the retail giant left several Portland, OR, area locations idle. Recognizing an opportunity to capitalize on the redevelopment of many of these valuable sites, Target Corporation, with the assistance of design-builder Baugh/Skanska USA and architect MulvannyG2 Architecture, orchestrated an extensive modernization program at Mall 205, Portland, OR, that replaced the facility's old, tired look with one that is more contemporary “distinctively Target,” but with a twist.The transformation of the Mall 205 Target includes a first for area shoppers: It is one of two, two-story Targets in Oregon. Experimenting with this new multi-level format, the Target at Mall 205 retains the company's typical open, airy retail setting, with necessary adaptations to the site and elevations. There were a lot of things about the existing conditions and the neighborhood design standards that dictated differences from Target's prototype,” says Randy Trout, project manager, MulvannyG2 Architecture, Portland, OR.Scott Jackson, MulvannyG2 team leader, concurs with this assessment, noting, This was rather unique for a Target. It's an atypical elevation, but it does blend nicely with the existing remodel of the store and shopping center next door. The team went ahead and picked up on those elements and took it to the next level, and Target was very receptive to that, even though it's not their standard look.”The major challenge for the team was working with the outdated and unsightly architecture of the existing structure. New architectural elements include façades that feature masonry as a grounding element, EIFS on upper sections, and metal siding and canopies consistent with the recent remodel of the attached mall. Trout adds, It was an opportunity to take the vocabulary expressed in the adjacent mall renovation and take it a step further, to a greater level of detail.”The guidelines the City of Portland puts forth for large retail projects require an interactive” exchange between the store and pedestrians through storefront glazing, whether it's passive “a display window “or active “glazing that allows views into the interior of the store,” says MulvannyG2 Senior Designer James Cooper. Here, we rearranged a few of the interior elements to allow much more glazing into the store “designed to create a pedestrian rhythm of storefronts, much like small shops.” To serve the needs of both Target and the City, the café area was positioned at the front of the store with windows facing the parking lot. In addition, employee areas were situated at the exterior wall to take advantage of fenestration requirements.Renovations on the 30-year-old store also included seismic and structural upgrades, asbestos abatement, additional egress corridors and stairs, and life safety/security systems to meet current code. The building was stripped down to its structural shell,” notes Todd Predmore, project manager at Baugh/SKANSKA USA, the design-build contractor. All of the existing mechanical/electrical systems were removed out of the ceiling space so the new wiring, piping, etc. were ready to go. We had a good team; everybody listened to one another, and the store was constructed to fit Target's requirements.”One unique factor of this renovation became a customer-friendly solution, says Jackson. Because this was a two-story project, which is very unusual for Target, we incorporated two Verma-port systems, a vertical transportation concept that is relatively new to the United States.” Essentially an escalator for shopping carts, taking the cart alongside the shopper on a second track and making it much easier for people to shop on different floors, the novelty of it draws the attention of customers to the second floor,” notes Sake Reindersma, vice president at MulvannyG2's Portland office.With two levels encompassing 157,000 square feet of space, Target “Mall 205 is the largest Target store in Oregon. Following its $7 million modernization with an imaginative, flexible owner and project team, it is a success story for Target and the surrounding community as well.Linda K. Monroe ([email protected]) is editorial director at Buildings magazine.

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