The Shanghai Pentagonal Mart is bigger than the Virginia headquarters of the US Department of Defense, sprawling across over 70 acres, but has the same total lack of architectural charm.
When its doors open at the beginning of next year, it will be a shopping centre and an office block but everywhere will be accessible from pretty much anywhere else. The site is around 40 minutes from the center of Shanghai by car.
“The project started in 2003,” said a spokesman. “Construction started the following year and we are nearly finished. We are just sealing the roof. The design of the project was inspired by the appearance of the Pentagon. This building is not only impressive externally, but it is actually a very smart design. The logistics mean that people can circulate freely inside.”
Probably will not even have to show security passes.
The US Pentagon is said to have been designed so that employees can reach any office inside in under seven minutes on foot.
The statement is made: "We have signed thousands of tenants already, including a number of Western brands.” Without anything specific being mentioned.
Shanghai Megamall, the owner of the building, has managed to sign up the United Nations as one client.
China Car Times said the UN will place its procurement and logistics center at the Shanghai Pentagon. Last year, the UN procured $1.8 billion of goods made in China, including mobile homes, electrical equipment, telephones, furniture, vegetable oil and salt.