November 6, 2020

In these incredibly strange times that have impacted commercial development markets around the globe, Epstein is pleased to be providing full-service planning, design and engineering for a large multi-phased mixed-use development in Bacau, Romania, a city situated in the historical region of Moldavia, at the foothills of the Carpathian Mountains.

This project, which is nestled along the Bristita River, is being developed by the new real estate development arm of the home improvement company, Dedeman, similar to what we in the U.S. know as The Home Depot.

This multi-year project will be Dedeman’s first ground-up real estate development and house their new corporate headquarters.

Epstein’s Dedeman master plan for the site includes a new central shopping and entertainment district for Bacau. A park and riverfront entertainment boulevard are also envisioned to give the community public areas for leisure and sponsored events. Multi-family residential, hotel and class “A” office buildings will also be offered along the central shopping district and central park area, creating a dynamic and exciting environment aimed at attracting public and private guests. Additionally, to further add to the vibrancy of the project, Epstein developed an interactive landscape structure that will serve as a marketing and symbolic feature for the development.

For some of these public spaces, there will be a number of interesting public engagement opportunities. For example, there will be an attraction called “The Nest,” which will have interactive water features, splash pads and outdoor dining, creating an energetic environment. Restaurants and retail will benefit from the activities; outdoor diners will be able to hear and see the water; and large plaza areas can support special outdoor events such as markets, movies in the park, food trucks, and car club events. Plus, also in this area, local artists will be given the opportunity to have their sculptors featured throughout.

There are also several sustainable elements Epstein is incorporating into the master plan, which include:

  • Implementing site strategies such as increasing green landscape areas, reducing water run-off by reducing the amount of paved sidewalks and roadways, water reclamation and porous paving surfaces;
  • Utilizing native and low water use plants;
  • Solar panels and geothermal systems to supplement the electrical and HVAC systems in the buildings;
  • And sustainable building daylighting and solar orientation strategies

Furthermore, as the world begins to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, Epstein is making intelligent design decisions and developing new ways of thinking about space to help people feel comfortable and safe. Some of our COVID design strategies for Dedeman include:

  • Touch-free thermal scanning at the lobby security desk to check people’s temperatures;
  • Private, in-building, exclusive parking, providing direct, touch-free and secure access to tenant floors;
  • Washrooms being constructed with anti-microblial surfaces and potentially additionally fixtures to promote social distancing;
  • And the building façade to include operable windows and easy access to large outdoor areas

While our Chicago office is leading the planning and design efforts, Epstein's Bucharest office is serving as the local architect and engineer responsible for the execution documents.