WS Development acquired the property and hired Arrowstreet to re-imagine this shopping destination. The design called for tearing off the roof of a portion of the interior to create an exterior pedestrian walkway with lush landscaping and social gathering places that connects the two sections of the shopping center. Arrowstreet’s design also offers an enlivened streetscape with outward facing storefronts that invite shoppers in from the parking areas.
Since its opening in 1962, Hilldale Shopping Center has been an icon in the Madison, Wisconsin market. Through the years, it has experienced several reinventions responding to the needs of the community. The center had evolved from a fully enclosed mall to a hybrid with some dated street retail attached to a tired enclosed portion of anchor stores and shops. The façade of the enclosed portion with its blank, brick façade contrasted poorly to the more inviting storefronts along the main stretch and gave the impression it was turning its back on the approaching visitor. The indirect, internal corridor networks did not create a welcome connection to the sidewalks and parking areas. The west parking field was meaningfully under-utilized and felt like a rear service area, due to the visual influence of the existing loading dock.