SM City Annex: The mall that started it all
MANILA, Philippines – The recent opening of SM City North-EDSA’s Annex Building gave shoppers a first look at the exciting redevelopment and expansion of SM’s first supermall.
When SM City North-EDSA first opened in November 1985, the country was in the midst of a major political and economic crisis brought about by the death of Ninoy Aquino.
Despite conventional wisdom, SM founder and chairman Henry Sy Sr. pursued his dream of bringing the shopping mall concept he had observed during his visits to the US to the Philippines. And as they say, the rest is history.
As SM wraps up its 50th anniversary celebrations with 33 supermalls all over the Philippines, it returns to its roots with the redevelopment of the mall that started it all. The new Annex highlights the initial phase of the mall’s redevelopment, which began with the opening of The Block in 2006.
When completed, the new SM City North-EDSA will have a gross floor area of 425,000 square meters, making it the third largest mall in the world.
The new 92,832-sqm., six-level Annex is located on the site of the old Annex building. It has been designed to create an enjoyable and festive shopping and entertainment environment, while becoming an iconic symbol in Metro Manila’s rapidly changing and growing cityscape and community.
The exterior of the Annex consists of a simple block clad design in undulating perforated aluminum panels. In the context of the total redevelopment, the façade treatment is carried over to the Main Mall and The Block. The façade is interspersed by either glass or metal cubes with the undulations of the cladding panels creating a dynamic composition.
The eastern end of the Annex overlooking the park will consist of a monumental glass wall. This creates a grand shop front from which the atrium, its scenic lights, as well as various other retail outlets and restaurants can be seen from the park, thereby merging indoor and outdoor experiences and integrating these two components of the mall.
The choice of aqua suggests an affinity to the other SM malls — Megamall and SM Mall of Asia. In all, a dynamic composition is created to give the mall a distinct architectural identity with a balance of dynamism and elegance.
In the Annex interiors, tenants are arranged along the ribbon-like atrium with vertical circulation provided by escalators and lifts at the opposite ends of the so-called ribbon.
Interiors are clean and modern, and centered around a curvilinear atrium, which stretches its length. Daylight is provided through a series of circular glass cones set into the ceiling, giving the interior a light, airy feeling.
The new Annex’s tenant mix includes high-end retail and dining establishments, a Cyberzone, a games arcade, and bowling center.
Its lower ground floor includes leisure shops, while its upper ground floor consists of general services. Nourishment and indulgence shops are located on the second floor, while specialty shops and fashion finds complete the third floor. Cyberzone is the attraction of the fourth and fifth floors, while an upcoming call center will be placed on the sixth floor.
The Cyberzone at SM City North-EDSA is the largest tech center in all the SM malls, and a one-stop haven for tech-savvy shoppers. With over a hundred shops and tech services, it will include tenants offering hardware and software solutions, mobile communications, Internet, and gaming services.
With the opening of the new Annex as well as the upgrading of its popular main mall, SM City North-EDSA is all set to establish new benchmarks in the shopping world.