Last December, we commented on the announcement of the new “flagship Apple's global Federation Square, located in Melbourne (Australia). Since then, Ma has faced some problems with the local community after the architectural design of the new store was not approved and, for construction, the building Yarra Building it would have to be demolished.
Despite the setbacks, Apple managed to get the project approved at the last instance and went ahead with the normal schedule, and construction is planned to start early next year. However, Federation Square recently received temporary equity protection from the NTA (National Trust of Australia), a non-governmental body that is committed to the promotion and conservation of natural and historical heritage and of cultural importance for Australia.
The protection order should last until December of this year, which would not be a problem for the Cupertino giant, since the works are only scheduled for next year. However, when the temporary protection ends, the NTA will deliberate on the permanent protection of the region, which could disrupt Apple's plans for good.
In addition to all this, last week the Melbourne city council revised the design and infrastructure plans of the project built by Apple in partnership with the company Foster and Partners, pointing out more flaws that can cause the “loss of definition of the square”. Among the changes, the council inferred that there is a lack of feeding places and environments for domestic animals to stay, as disclosed by The Age.
Despite receiving protected area status, the Australian state government is taking sides with Apple, as well as other companies that have plans to build on site, and stated that there is not enough reason to add a cultural heritage list to a location that is “just 16 years old”. With regard to changes in design, we will see if Apple will be able to make so many changes to win even more support from the Australian government.
New store in Paris due to open in November
After more than two years of waiting, the new flagship Apple in a building located on Avenue des Champs-lyses, prestigious avenue de Paris (France), should open in November this year, as disclosed by the La Chane Info.
The store is located at the entrance to the J.M. Weston, a French shoe brand, and Apple chose to preserve the classic character of the building by carrying out only a few renovations. In addition, the building’s five-story trio will function as Apple’s biggest forum in a flagship, while some offices have also been installed on site.
Like the Melbourne store, the new flagship in Paris it was also designed by the company Foster and Partners. During the construction process, some photos revealed the work on the outside of the building. According to 9to5Mac, the building was being sold for $ 864 million, however, the final figure was not released after the agreement reached last April between Ma and the owner.
At the same time that Ma is preparing to open a new store in Paris, it should close another one in a well-known point in the city, at the Carrousel Du Louvre shopping center. Inaugurated in November 2009, the store was Apple's first in France and has received over 12 million visitors since then.
Still according to the 9to5MacThe main reason for the closure of Apple's activities on the site is a disagreement between the modern design of Ma's most recent stores with the lack of possibility of major renovations on the site (which is underground), in addition to other problems with the mall's infrastructure.
Some of the Apple employees Carrousel Du Louvre will be relocated to the new store on the Champs-lyses and to the more than 20 official Apple outlets in France. For now, no official dates have been released for the closing of the store in the Louvre or the official opening date of the new Champs-lyses store.
Apple prepares to open another store in China
In addition to the store in Paris, Apple is preparing to open its newest store in China, this time located in Suzhou, one of the biggest tourist spots in the country. Located at the entrance to the tallest building in Suzhou, the store is in the commercial center of the city and expects to receive one of the largest numbers of visitors per month.
Over the past week, the store's facade has been decorated with red paper that displays Ma's logo in a chrome tone, as disclosed by a user on a Chinese social network. The banners are the first official confirmation of the opening of an Apple Store on site, although rumors have persisted since last year. Since then, Apple has not made any formal announcements about the new store.
The opening of Suzhou is part of Apple's project to open new stores and renovate old locations, such as Paris, and more openings are expected to take place by the end of this month. Beyond the new flagship, Ma is expected to invest more than $ 1.5 billion in two new development and research centers, one in Suzhou and the other in Shanghai.
via MacRumors, 9to5Mac