Public art brings community, beauty, energy to mall redevelopment

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One of the joys of shopping is the sense of discovery. At Eastridge Center in San Jose, Calif., that’s as much about what the consumer sees as buys.

Eastridge, a 1.4 million-square-foot shopping mall that opened in 1971, has been under significant redevelopment by its new parent, Pacific Retail Capital Partners. Part of that upgrade is the installation of 20,000 square feet of murals by four California artists: CYRCLE, Brendan Monroe, Lila Gemellos and Aaron De La Cruz; it marks the world’s largest collection of outdoor murals on a shopping center.

“The opportunity to partner with four talented muralists to create an unparalleled public art series is very special,” says Najla Kayyem, senior vice president of marketing for Pacific Retail Capital Partners. “Immediately the energy and excitement around Eastridge have changed and we’re reminded how art can transform perceptions, fuel urban revitalization and become an economic stimulus.”

The idea of reimagining the previously blank brick, stucco and tiled walls came from Gensler, a global architectural, design and planning firm, which also came up with almost 16,000 square feet of super graphics for the space.

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