How Austrian immigrant Viktor Grunbaum came up with the idea of a shopping mall

How Austrian immigrant Viktor Grunbaum came up with the idea of a shopping mall

Categories: History | Society | World

A mall, a shopping center is a distinctive feature of any big city. His life is built around him, full of shopping, entertainment and pleasant meetings. Who came up with the idea to gather hundreds of stores under one roof and make it so that a person could spend a whole day in the "shopaholic's paradise".

How Austrian immigrant Viktor Grunbaum came up with the idea of a shopping mall

Victor Grunbaum, a native of Vienna, came up with the idea of the mall, who, fleeing from the Nazis, came to New York with $ 8 in his pocket.

First of all, Victor shortened his last name to the sonorous Gruen and started decorating shop windows. The first order is a boutique of leather goods on Fifth Avenue. After the successful completion of the project, the customers lined up for a talented Jew from Vienna.

How Austrian immigrant Viktor Grunbaum came up with the idea of a shopping mall

But Victor decides not to stay in one place for a long time, especially since the memories of They forced him to look for a city where he could realize the idea of space for people. Gruen moved to Los Angeles, where after ten years of work he opened his architectural firm "Victor Gruen Associates", which is quickly becoming one of the best in the country.

Victor lacks cozy places where cars do not interfere with people enjoying their time sitting in a cafe and discussing current affairs. The bustling center and noisy sleeping suburbs - that's what I had to deal with. But here a special order was received, which played a special role in the fate of Gruen.

How Austrian immigrant Viktor Grunbaum came up with the idea of a shopping mall

We are talking about the Northland Mall project, which appeared in Detroit in 1954. It was a gallery of shops standing in the open air. The next step was the first ever closed mall — Southdale Mall in Minnesota.

Before Victor, it never occurred to anyone that it was possible to build a large shopping center practically in the field, where customers would go shopping. The matter was not limited to construction. In order to attract visitors, we had to invent a lot of tricky things. So in A separate building was built in Souzdale with many shops where you could buy almost everything you needed.

How Austrian immigrant Viktor Grunbaum came up with the idea of a shopping mall

Navigation is somewhat confusing, so sometimes you have to walk half of the building to get to the right store, however, everything is indicated on the maps. There are no windows and clocks in the mall, so there is no need to keep track of time, aggressive light in the aisles and soft in the shops literally invites you to go there and leave some money.

How Austrian immigrant Viktor Grunbaum came up with the idea of a shopping mall

If you are hungry, numerous food courts are waiting for you, and the tables are covered with a special sound-repelling composition that makes you finish eating as soon as possible and leave, giving way to other eaters.

The consumer pipeline was a success, and Viktor Gruen went down in history as one of the most famous architects of the 20th century.

How Austrian immigrant Viktor Grunbaum came up with the idea of a shopping mall

Victor Gruen will do a lot for Souzdale: a residential complex, a school, a hospital center and even a pond. He also has dozens of malls all over America on his account, the reception is the same — the first indoor one, it still works.

And Victor Gruen still returned to Vienna in 1968, where he actively engaged in the development of the city. He actively fought against the dominance of cars on the streets and created new zones for pedestrians. The creator of malls died in Vienna, February 14, 1980.

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