The demalling process in Italy
The demise of retail buildings is a rather recent phenomenon, very common in the United States. Hundreds of shopping malls and big box stores are falling into decay and their failure influences, to some degrees, the contemporary and future evolution of retail buildings. Europe and Italy are not immune to the overgrowth dynamics of the retail system that have been observed in the United States, and the first cases of decline and crisis have already appeared in several Italian areas. Demalling, a technical term that defines the response to the decline and demise of shopping centres, represents a totally new urban challenge to redevelop vacant malls and big box stores. Features and issues arising from the conversion of retail buildings have been analyzed focusing on the Italian context, through two case studies: the abandoned shopping mall Euromercato in Casoria (Naples) and the closed grocery store Esselunga in Pioltello (Milan), transformed in an Health Centre.