A Swedish mall, called ReTuna Återbruksgalleria, exclusively sells recycled and upcycled goods.
Unlike a traditional mall with a shopping centre, ReTuna also has a traditional municipal recycling centre. Visitors can drop off goods that they no longer need in the recycling centre, and then browse for something 'pre-loved'.
Our traditional business models have been largely linear with a make-take-waste model. As we face increasing resource scarcity and landfills being filled up in various cities, there is an opportunity to shift to a closed-loop economy. While the transition to the circular economy has begun at the business and city level (with Peterborough in the UK), this is the first time it is happening at a mall level.
The mall is in several ways a cultural institution for many. A mall dedicated to recycled goods raises awareness of the circular economy to the ordinary citizen, while potentially engendering a shift in consumer mindsets on what is valued: will durability replace novelty? If the idea scales up, architects and private property developers will have to build in-house recycling and reparation infrastructure into similar circular malls - while brands and product designers will increase the visibility of their goods by designing for longevity.