Aedas chosen to design Pakistani shopping mall

BIRMINGHAM architect Aedas has been appointed to design the largest retail-led leisure development in south Lahore.

The scheme, dubbed Crystals, is aimed at creating an iconic destination for the Punjab province. It will occupy 2.1m sq ft of retail and entertainment space and its design will encompass a sequence of eye-catching crystal shaped structures.

The theme will be strong colours and textiles, designed to create a powerful feeling of opulence.

Crystals will be home to a state of the art cinema complex, a host of food courts and a contemporary-styled hotel.  It will also house exceptional facilities designed to attract a wealth of social gatherings including large banquets and family gatherings, including weddings.

Marcus Wilkins, of Aedas, said: “There has been an increase in demand for retail space in Lahore, essentially due to the large population increase and growth of diverse income groups. Aedas is delighted to play its role in helping the city to meet this demand as well as create a significant catalyst for the ongoing development of the area.

“The arrival of the scheme will form a striking backdrop for the area. The Aedas concept of colours, colours and textiles has been inspired by the rich jewelry design and craftsmanship that Pakistan is historically renowned for.  We thought this was particularly apt as Lahore is renowned as the cultural capital of Pakistan.”

Crystals forms phase one of the Expo site masterplan in the south western region of Lahore.  Start on site is scheduled for March 2013 and will be completed within a three year timescale.
The ground breaking multi-million pound scheme is aimed at attracting a wealth of national and international retail brands names as well as a small percentage of commercial activity.

“We believe that the design combined with the attraction of anchor tenants will drive and attract footfall, creating an unrivalled new realm of entertainment and leisure activity for residents and local visitors alike,” added Mr Wilkins.

Aedas in Birmingham will work in conjunction with its Pakistan office to deliver the milestone project.
Aedas has designed around 25m sq ft of retail and leisure space across Europe, the Middle East and Asia.  The team is also looking at retail malls in Saudi Arabia, Basra and elsewhere in Pakistan.