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Buildings Speak for Themselves: Commercial Development Architecture

By Admin

August 3, 2016 Architecture

Buildings Speak for Themselves: Commercial Development Architecture

First impressions are everything.

They shape your opinion. They shape your mood. They shape values. They shape your responses. But at SH Architecture, our commercial architecture firm in Las Vegas is not talking about people. No, we are talking specifically about buildings, commercial development architecture to be exact.

Commercial development architecture has a voice. Listen.

Try this the next time you go to the grocery store, mall or shopping center: As you step out of your car, take a second. Look at the commercial architecture design. What is it saying to you? Ask yourself questions. How does it make you feel? Why was it designed this way?

Does the brick, cinderblock or concrete remind you of something? Does the gold exterior color make you feel comfortable? What does the crack in the walls say? Why is it so big? Why is it so square? Does it make your feel safe, threatened, bored?

Most of the time, we never do take the time to consciously ask ourselves these questions. Mostly because we’ve answered these questions already. Not by stating directly to ourselves, “The red color of the cinderblock reminds me of fire; therefore, the store’s cinder block is warm.”

Rather, we feel it. Or rather, the building tells us how we should feel about it by conveying or invoking images or symbols, and then we feel it. In our subconscious mind, we answer initial questions to understan

d our relationship and context of ourselves to the building, and shape our impressions of the building.

While we may not be aware of it, we do this instantly. For example, when you see a particularly ugly or dilapidated building, you immediately retreat or revolt against it. You may feel inclined to say, “What a dump!” On the opposite side, a beautiful and charming building draws you in, and you may remark to others the charm of it.

What does all this mean?

We are not asking you to be consciously aware when you assess every new building you meet. Rather, consider the possibilities why we designed the Boca Park Marketplace the way our commercial design firm in Las Vegas did.   

Granted we aligned ourselves to our client’s wants and a set budget, but there are artistic licenses in our commercial architects’ design.

For example, what does the choice of warm colors such as gold and red tones convey to a shopper? Did we want to make the shopper feel comfortable and happy? Did the color associations of gold remind them of high-end shopping?

Behold the Commercial Development Architecture


Why is the shopping center so sprawling and connected with one another, as opposed to contained and separated? Did this create the feeling of formidability? A feeling of connection and community? Or, did we do it to intentionally make people shop more by placing storefronts close to one another? Does the building make you feel more comfortable in shopping because it looks “nice?”

We are not saying this to create a guessing game. We are saying this because buildings can speak for themselves and they can make people behave in a certain way. However, they need a profession

al commercial design firm in Las Vegas, such as SH Architecture, to be the orchestrator in what a building speaks to you.


If you wanted your commercial development architecture to convey luxury, exclusiveness, ostentatiousness and chicness, yet people see it as boring, hideous and no one wants to shop there, not only have you damaged your business and brand, but you’ve wasted money.

Get the professionals

At SH Architecture, our commercial design firms in Las Vegas and Salt Lake City can create a  commercial development building that is not only beautiful but draws people in.  

Contact SH Architecture today and create something built to last.