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The Independent: "Mall stories: Lost in floorspace"

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"Service corridors in every centre, whether it's a tired Eighties construction or a Westfield-style mega mall, are similar: bare breezeblock walls, strip fluorescent lighting, industrial sized rodent traps and occasional foul exhaust wafts from the ventilation system. The transition from the airy atriums, softly-lit galleries and water features of the main centre to its backstage area can be a jarring experience. Shopping centre workers are constantly reminded that they are the below stairs personnel.

"[But] I'm not sure there is anything very edifying about sneering at those who choose to spend their leisure time in shopping centres. I couldn't definitively say that marvelling over the textiles in a National Trust property, or installing garden decking is necessarily a better way to pass the afternoon.

"I think the problem with shopping centres is that despite, or perhaps because of, their size and ubiquity they escape or beguile our gaze. They present themselves as welcoming, democratic and fun experiences, but anyone who looks closely will see that the reality is far more complex and fascinating."

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