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Thread: Wal-Mart supercenter architecture

  1. #1
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    Wal-Mart supercenter architecture

    We are beginning the site review process for a Wal-Mart Supercenter in a small central New York town and would like to have a building that is notthe usual grey block wit red accent stripe standard Wal-Mart design. Does any one have any experience that they can share on designs that are reflective of the community?

  2. #2
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    In Round Rock, TX:





    There's also another one in Buda, TX next to the Cabela's that has a rustic look. I don't have a pic of that one though.

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

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    Cyburbian Fat Cat's avatar
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    Fat Cat

    It would be interesting to see if the sides and the rear are any different from the standard big box.
    I have performed reviews on other big boxes, where the front is a different facade with the rear and the sides, the same old big box
    It kind of reminded me of the old westerns with the fake fronts
    or alternatively
    the wizard of oz
    with a lot of smoke and mirrors until you pulled the curtain aside
    When they leave and they always do, you are left with the big box

  4. #4
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    OK, I found some links on the Buda Walmart:

    Renderings: http://www.budatx.com/WalMart.htm

    If I get a chance, next time I go up to Austin I'll snap a few pictures of the finished product.

    Fat Cat is correct that the enhancement is restricted to the front usually, and sides if you are lucky. It's really all just parsley though... sometimes these bog boxes end up looking worse because they try so hard to be something they aren't.
    Last edited by Suburb Repairman; 19 Mar 2007 at 4:02 PM.

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

  5. #5
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    Wal-Mart Architecture

    Suburb Repairman,

    Thanks for the Round Rock and Buda Texas photos, They will help when we develope a theme for the new Supercenter.

    If other members have photos that they can post it would be appreciated.

    Cortplanning

  6. #6
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by cortplanning View post
    Suburb Repairman,

    Thanks for the Round Rock and Buda Texas photos, They will help when we develope a theme for the new Supercenter.

    If other members have photos that they can post it would be appreciated.

    Cortplanning
    You might poke around in the Cyburbia gallery as well; I think there are a few Walmarts from New Hampshire & Vermont in there you could probably pull from as well that might come closer to the regional vernacular.

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

  7. #7
    Quote Originally posted by cortplanning View post
    We are beginning the site review process for a Wal-Mart Supercenter in a small central New York town and would like to have a building that is notthe usual grey block wit red accent stripe standard Wal-Mart design. Does any one have any experience that they can share on designs that are reflective of the community?
    I don't think Wal-Mart would do "the usual grey block with red accent stripe" design even if you wanted them to. I haven't seen them build one like that in nearly a decade, and they are rapidly remodeling those old stores. It'll still be a big box store, but it will at least have a nice facade.

    EDIT: Your best bet for info here is probably the horse's mouth--Wal-Mart's website has press photos of a number of their stores, including some newer ones that have context-sensitive design and even some particularly attractive and engaging architecture! Here is the link to various style Supercenters (They also have Sam's Clubs, Wal-Marts, and Neighborhood Markets)

    A web search turned up a few others--
    Austin Texas urban store (I think this is a particularly interesting design)
    Reno, NV
    Last edited by brandonmason; 19 Mar 2007 at 11:58 AM. Reason: Add links to pictures

  8. #8
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    Maybe it is just me, but I don't think much of any of the images that have been posted (or linked to) so far. The ones that try to make them look like multiple storefronts are by far the most odious. Don't get me wrong. I am not an anti-WalMart crusader looking for another opportunity to vent. I just think we can do better with the design of big boxes than tacking on a couple false gables over the doorways or making the thing look like some cartoonish "main street" retail block.

    We have been designing attractive large buildings for thousands of years, so why can't we do the same with a large retail store? Perhaps we start by getting the site correct and then move on to the building. Integrate it into its surroundings. Make the entry, the walks, the drives, and the parking feel like public space. Design the building to relate to the site. Give it a cohesive and authentic feel. If something is there just to comply with a formula in the code, it probably does not belong. If it has no real function, it probably does not belong.
    Anyone want to adopt a dog?

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