Jury prize

Au Pont Rouge, Saint Petersburg

Designed by: Cheungvogl Architects
For client: BTK Development Floor area: 1983.00 M² Year of completion: 2016
Awarded: 年度多品牌店 Jury

About the Project

Cheungvogl has created an open exhibition retail space around a robotic system within the restoration of the 110 year old iconic department store, Au Pont Rouge in Saint Petersburg, Russia.
In Au Pont Rouge, Cheungvogl creates a precedence to implement a robotic system to choreograph new experiences that encompasses historical, architectural, technological and cultural values for visitors to enjoy spending time, interacting and exploring in the store. The physical shopping experience is tailored for visitors’ entertainment with hands-free comfort and efficiency that the automated system offers. The exhibition space is freed from all trading operations and stocks, unfolding the potentials of creating a retail environment with enhanced spatial qualities and surprising experiences with alternative uses of space.
While the external envelope of Au Pont Rouge is restored to its original state in accordance with local regulations, the sensitive internal upgrades of the historic icon is designed to enable the transformation of the department store into a new centrepiece for commercial, social and cultural life.

What’s unique about it

Au Pont Rouge enabled us to manifest the idea of social and cultural relevance in a “retail experiment”. As our fundamental design philosophy derives from the social and cultural implications on the usage and qualities of physical space, especially in the digital age, we could employ robotic automated technologies to re-inform and enhance the spatial experience and to re-create the social and cultural meaning of the historic structure and the urban context.
It is the conceptual response to adapt to changing customer behaviours and the role of the department store in a time where online stores affect not only the traditional retail model, but also the urban context and what defines inner cities, in which retail has always been the catalyst for central urban activity and public life. By applying postmodern technologies, we are able to revert the process - instead of trying to keep up with changing communal patterns influenced by advancing technologies we are able to create an ambiguous hybrid platform to influence public activity, while creating a socially, culturally and economically relevant precedence. This conceptual and associative plurality is one of the main focuses to create social catalysts.

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