RSP Architects on designing the Funan experience

Prior to the redevelopment of Funan, RSP was already involved in the planning for eight years (Credit: CapitaLand)
SINGAPORE (EDGEPROP) - Although it has only been six months since CapitaLand’s Funan opened its doors to the public, the building has taken on a life of its own and is maintaining an unceasing buzz.
At 7am on most days, cyclists will ride through the indoor tracks, towards the bicycle hub, where some will freshen up before heading up to their offices.
This scene is in contrast with the retiree crowd that streams in later in the morning to enjoy brunch at Sinpopo Brand.
These were some of the observations from senior architect Loh Zhu Ping and executive architect Shaziran Shahabdeen of RSP Architects Planners & Engineers who are behind Funan’s architecture together with Woods Bagot as the lead design consultant.
The bicycle hub at Funan houses amenities such as shower cabins, lockers, and a bicycle repair and pump station (Credit: CapitaLand)
“You still have a lot of people coming in at other times, especially the lunch crowd and on weekends,” says Shahabdeen, who adds that it “is quite important to have a mall that people will keep coming, and people will always find something interesting and new every time they are here.”

Not an ordinary mall

Loh says the design of Funan is an “interesting departure” from what most other retail malls offer. While most are designed to pack as much leasable space into its floor plan as possible, one of the main design drivers for Funan came from CapitaLand’s “conscious decision” to open up more non-leasable spaces. “It is almost like co-opting this whole ‘POPS’ or ‘privately-owned public spaces’ concept inside the mall,” explains Loh.
The retail pods at the Tree of Life (Credit: Samuel Isaac Chua/ The Edge Singapore)
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