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Martyrdom of an Icon “The fall of the American shopping mall”

Driven by optimism and faith, Austrian born architect and planner, Victor Gruen thoroughly believed in the potential of the American shopping mall. Visions of mixed use developments ran throughout his imagination, fancying environments similar to that of Austrian main streets. Utopian in nature, the mall was to alleviate the decentralized sprawl of post war suburbia and reduce dependence on the automobile. Despite failure to encourage urban and social reconfigurations, the indulgences and pursuits of social capital thrived, the mall become the epicenter of hangout culture. Yet in 1978, years into retirement and serving as a planning consultant in Vienna, Gruen publically spoke against the mall, saying that… “I am often called the father of the shopping mall”, “I would like to take this opportunity to disclaim paternity once and for all. I refuse to pay alimony to those bastard developments. They destroyed our cities”


portfolio _ iteration 5  
portfolio _ iteration 5  

2016 11 30 raymond majewski portfolio