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Russian city Perm is about to get its most modern mall

With Planeta Perm, MallTech as developer and Sonae Sierra as designer, are set to unlock a shopping center experience with 83,000 sq m GLA and 185 stores.

Sonae Sierra Development Services was recently commissioned by MallTech, one of the main shopping center developers in Russia, to design what will become a super-regional mall in Perm Krai in Russia, Planeta Perm. MallTech and Sonae Sierra are working closely together to tackle this challenge and deliver a best-in-class product for the surrounding community, the center’s visitors, and tenants.

The city of Perm is known as a gateway to the Urals, on the crossroads of Europe and Asia. With a population of 2.6 million people and a catchment area of 915,000 potential shoppers, the final agreed brief was for a center with 83,000 sq m of GLA, 150,000 sq m of GBA, 185 stores, and 3,600 parking spaces. The opening date has been slated for the fourth quarter of 2020. 

Russia’s economy is growing again, with Russian retail sales expanding by 1.4% in June, according to government data, continuing this year’s positive trend. According to recent research, a shortage of regional large format shopping facilities in the country has emboldened developers to commission new schemes to meet rising demand. Planeta Perm is set to be the largest shopping center in the region, inspiring Sonae Sierra and MallTech to think „big“.

A sense of place

Sonae Sierra’s Conceptual Design & Architecture team always aims to meet the challenge of designing culturally meaningful malls with impressive results, shaping one-of-a-kind iconic destinations that aim to inspire a sense of pride and belonging among local residents. The right design for Planeta Perm had to combine distinctive traces and elements to integrate the project into local culture, while applying global, state-of-the-art standards. The plan for the center’s layout is to keep things simple, creating a comfortable experience with three entrances from the external parking area, two of which will be clearly visible from the main entry routes.

The building will be developed on two levels with the main plaza at its core, designed to host events of all types, that can be seen from both levels. The leisure offer will be located on the first floor, with a modern food hall, cinemas and family entertainment center. The spaces between the two levels maintain a perfect, two-way visual connection.

Planeta Perm will be a retail destination for shopping as well as a place to visit and enjoy, thus becoming an extension of the city–the “New Perm”. Also, since the early stages of the layout studies, Sonae Sierra’s design has always allowed for future expansion.

Meaningful design elements

Creative elements and diverse materials will be combined to make the façades vibrant and iconic. Curtain glass walls will let in lots of natural light, while abstract giant tree shapes merge the adjacent forest areas with the building. Earth strata ribbons link both the tenant logos and the media screen, while steel panels are perforated with shapes from ancient Perm Animal Style, with the voids backlit as the starry night. By blending different moods and iconic images, the façade scheme emerges with a design that evokes the geological history of Perm.

Overall, the design pays tribute to the city’s forest landscape. The range of materials and textures evokes the earth strata and the geological past of the Permian Age, when Europe and Asia originally formed. A closer look reveals new graphic elements–silhouettes of archaeological artefacts found nearby, combined with cozy, warm light schemes. Such details are designed to create a pleasant shopping and leisure experience.

“Perm, one of the significant industrial, educational, and cultural centers of Russia, had a lack of modern retail facilities for the last 15 years. Since 2013, we were committed to creating the leading large shopping center in this city and we spent a lot of time and efforts to find the right place and prepare it for development. We contracted Sonae Sierra for the architectural concept design, as we had great experiences with their retail design in the past. The project is under construction and it meets our expectations when it comes to leasing: all major international fashion brands and important Russian anchor tenants are about to sign lease agreements,” said Yaroslav Khalyavin, MallTech Executive Director. “Our development team rose to the challenge in Perm Krai by combining our vast shopping center know-how with a bespoke, iconic design, set to attract the city’s visitors for years to come,” concluded Jorge Morgadinho, Sonae Sierra Development Services Managing Director.