> THE FACT
Opened last month in the Shoreditch area of London, Boxpark is the first temporary shopping centre built from shipping containers. Designed to last five years, it provides young designers and emerging brands with configured retail space in 30m2 containers at rates that are half those usually demanded in the area. Sixty containers have therefore been made available. Brands that are too mainstream are not welcome and there are independent food operators.
> THE ANALYSIS
Original, simple, cheap, multi-purpose and non-intrusive on the environment, the containers effectively incarnate what those who are charge of reinventing the city call “intelligent solutions”. After having been used to accommodate students inLondon,AmsterdamorLe Havre(cf. L’Oeil no. 174) as well as to house certain temporary shops, they have now renewed the image of shopping centres to turn them into places of inspiration and attempt, therefore, to attract new customers. Here, in this area known for being the trendiest one in London, are Boxpark’s containers putting themselves at the service of a promise of a unique shopping experience: finding brands “unlike any other” in a location “unlike any other”?