So Milton Keynes Shopping Centre (brainlessly rebranded as the meaningless ‘thecentre:mk’), has finally been listed. Hurrah! Designed by Conran & Partners first architecture director, Stuart Mosscop, when he was at Milton Keynes Development Corporation, it is half a mile long and over 30 million people a year shop there.
Jon Wright of the 20th Century Society told The Guardian “I am absolutely thrilled, I really never thought I’d see this day…a building of international importance. I hope now the owners will wear the listing as a badge of pride.”
The centre’s director, Robert Goodman, has described it as “nondescript and characterless”, which to me suggests he’s in the wrong job. It’s an architectural gem. A cool Miesian classic. The owners need to learn to love it. And it can be modified and extended sympathetically – just use architects who know about retail and know about fine architecture!
Paul Zara is an Architectural Director at Conran & Partners www.conranandpartners.com