Mellody Farm

Infill Retail Destination

Torti Gallas + Partners' Retail + Placemaking Studio creates a benchmark retail project in Chicagoland
The Challenge
Our Placemaking Team sought to create a vibrant retail destination that supported our client’s desire of bringing the eclectic and historic architecture of Chicago’s West Loop to the suburbs.
The Solution
Our Placemaking Team crafted “stories” for each building design as though they were adaptive reuse buildings. Each building was unique unto itself but belonged to a collection of new buildings to support a built-over-time appearance. Reclaimed materials were used throughout, courtesy of the Chicago Stockyard, and helped to add character.

Torti Gallas + Partners creates a recognizable address in Vernon Hills – an address that focuses on Placemaking design details and best-in-class shop and restaurant designs.

Quick Facts
50-acre Site Area
260 Luxury Apartments
272,242 SF Retail and Restaurants
Community Lawn
Public Art and Placemaking
The background

The former Hawthorn/Mellody Farm site is located at a prime corner of Townline Road and Milwaukee Avenue in Vernon Hills. Our design team worked with Regency Centers to develop a masterplan and architectural style to attract best-in-class retail and restaurant tenants. The design concept was met with great appreciation by Whole Foods Market, REI, Barnes & Noble, and other anchor tenants. Through the design phases we worked tirelessly to give attention to details and placemaking moments throughout the property.

The Approach

Our approach to creating a new retail destination employed an adaptive reuse design vernacular. This approach meant that there was a wide array of materials used throughout. From dozens of brick types to custom reclaimed wood barn doors, to an entire building being constructed of repurposed brick, the material palette was expansive. Our design team sourced all materials while working within the construction budget to create a one-of-a-kind retail development that has been gaining notoriety throughout the development community. Mellody Farm is a success story for Regency Centers, Torti Gallas + Partners, and most of all, the residents of Vernon Hills.

The Impact

This development has made a true impact in the region. Its success has led to the redevelopment of the Hawthorn Mall, directly across Milwaukee Avenue – another Torti Gallas + Partners design commission. Together, Vernon Hills is changing the perception of its community by responding to market needs with increased density and a mix of use. Most of all, these two properties have succeeded in creating great places in the community that are celebrated by their residents.


Services Provided
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