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Las Vegas’ CityCenter Struggling to Lure Pedestrians

Paul Goldberger doesn’t think much of it, some of its hotels are trying to set its own guests on fire, and Norman Foster can’t catch a break with his seemingly-cursed contribution to it. Add to those woes some fairly poor financials and it’s just par for the course at Las Vegas’ massive, starchitect-littered, still less than a year-old CityCenter development. Now some more dire news as the Las Vegas Sun files this report on something Goldberger and other architecture critics touched on in their reviews of the multi-billion dollar mixed-used plot of glitz and glitter: that pedestrians seem to not to want to go near the place. As you can imagine, for something that’s basically just a gigantic mall you can sleep in and gamble at, this isn’t how its owners were hoping things would play out. The problem, the Sun says, is a combination of a number of things: a lack of clear signage, an imposing exterior, an uninviting entrance, too far a distance from the main thoroughfare of The Strip, etc. The paper offers the words of a number of city planning critics, including that the entrance “has all the pleasantness of an airport terminal.” The owners of CityCenter have vowed to fix the problem, adding new paths and landscaping, and mentioning that it always takes time to iron out all the details. Meanwhile, the Sun throws in more than a few examples of similar developments who even some ironing weren’t enough to fix the outcome of their ultimate demise.

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