Park Place Retail

Irvine, California

Dated retail complex re-energized by new central plaza and storefronts

Originally built in the 1990s and overdue for an update, the Park Place redesign brought a fresh look to retail storefronts and established a brand-new plaza for customers to dine, chat or take a load off. The project offers a model example of how to build upon existing assets to create a simple, modernized and elegant solution.

The original parking lot, which suffered from poor vehicular circulation, was completely reconfigured. Drive aisles were realigned to flow more safely and parking stalls were arranged to fit more efficiently. With the improved parking layout, designers seized the opportunity to claim a portion of the existing parking lot for expanded pedestrian areas.

Raised slightly higher than the parking, a grand central plaza serves as the heart of the L-shaped complex. Curved-glass building walls help define the plaza’s circular shape; concrete seat walls further reinforce the pure geometry. The main plaza is surfaced with stained wood planks, and decorative paving gives character to walkways. Shade umbrellas and plush furnishings add a touch of luxury.

A deciduous accent tree occupies the plaza’s center. Native, drought-tolerant landscaping fills the generous planter areas that ring the perimeter. In the parking lot, a row of palms lines the path leading from the sidewalk to the shops, providing both shade and a sense of order.

Building façades were redesigned using a simple canvas of wood accents, metal canopies and a unified color scheme that creates a fresh backdrop for tenant signage and storefronts. Tasteful, low-level lighting brings pedestrian areas to life at night. The full improvements package optimizes tenant flexibility, identity and curb appeal.

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