The winner of the “Shopping Centre Act of the Year 2018” competition, organised by the Finnish Council of Shopping Centres, was Finland's first pop-up shopping centre – Pikkulaiva – owned by Citycon. The Pikkulaiva shopping centre, located in Espoonlahti, is a temporary building that will replace the services of the Lippulaiva shopping centre for a few years. The old Lippulaiva, located on the neighbouring plot, has been dismantled and a new, versatile shopping centre that provides everyday services will be built, doubling the size of the old shopping centre.
Pikkulaiva secures services nearby for the residents of the Espoonlahti area during construction and ensures that the businesses of the tenants of the dismantled Lippulaiva can continue uninterrupted despite the construction. The stores in the centre provide around 350 jobs, so the temporary shopping centre also contributes to the preservation of jobs during the construction of the new shopping centre.
Pikkulaiva is assembled from modules that are connected with wooden pin joints that are easy to separate. After a few years of use, the modules can be disassembled and transported to another location. The technical building systems are also assembled from similar modules. Thus, the whole building is recyclable and can be reused after the new Lippulaiva shopping centre has been completed and put into operation.
NCSC (Nordic Council of Shopping Centres) recognised Iso Omena as “The Best Shopping Centre in Finland” in 2018. The jury stated: “This year's winner is an excellent combination of functionality, innovation and capacity to renew itself. A successful, long-term strategy based on megatrends and determined leadership have produced results – the shopping centre has developed from an extremely versatile offering, at the same time showing great growth within all its indicators. In addition, the shopping centre has managed to create interesting, bold solutions. The centre serves its customers in a regionally unprecedented way, offering speed and convenience of business, coupled with experiences. The centre has succeeded in conquering new customer groups and significantly expanding its regional sphere of influence. This centre sets a new standard for Finnish shopping centres and marks the direction of development for the entire industry.”