With a 40-year history of supplying some of the finest meat in Johannesburg the renovated design of the Northcliff Impala Butchery required a utilitarian approach to retail design that would enhance customer experience and shop floor accessibility while exploring ideas of craft and production. The family run business has been passed down from father to son and following the C76AD renovation achieved local recognition as Johannesburg's best butchery in 2018.
The renovation splits the kitchen and office areas on the first floor while the ground floor is devoted to the butchery shop floor. While this split separates production and sales; transparency has been kept throughout with the upper floor visible from below. Product displays and customer circulation were purposefully considered and placed for easy visual access and transparency.
C76AD approached the renovation with an overall emphasis on craft and production - shopfitting was designed to be built and installed on-site and was completely custom. The constraints of renovating a operating retail space required speed and work-ability of construction, which informed the industrial aesthetic language and layout.
In order to renovate without disturbing neighbouring businesses, the building's services were approached in an unconventional way. Conduits housing electric, internet and lighting cables are visible running across the ceiling.
Modular steel design and components allow full shopfitting personalisation that can easily be disassembled and changed freely in the future as desired.
The shop front pulls customers in from the street through the use of curved walls with facade frontage showcasing the Butchery through product display boxes. Public areas designed were designed connecting the shop to the busy street threshold encouraging social interaction. This outside area (colloquially a 'stoep') becomes a popular space for weekend braais (barbecues) and outdoor sales, enhancing the butchery's social identity as being part of the local community's fabric.
The design successfully updates the established family business daily operations and retail; enhancing public and social interaction while modernising the butchery's local identity. Deemed ‘a cut above the rest'; the renovated Impala Butchery was named the Best Butchery for 2018 in the Best of Joburg Readers’ Choice Awards.
Project team: Principal architect: Carl Jacobsz - Collaborator: Warren Wilson