Social Studies | Preparation and Resources

Build Something Better: Economic Impacts of Development


To prepare to teach this lesson, teachers should:

  • Watch the Southdale Center segment from the PBS special, 10 Buildings that Changed America, on DVD or at CONTENT NOTE: In this segment, Victor Gruen is quoted as calling later shopping malls “bastard developments.”
  • Review the section titled “Social Studies Instruction.”
  • Review the worksheet titled “Social Studies Worksheet.”
  • Review resources below to be familiar with the Southdale Center and its impact on the local community and/or the community at large.



  • Mall Maker: Victor Gruen, Architect of an American Dream by M. Jeffrey Hardwick
  • Centers for the Urban Environment: Survival of the Cities by Victor Gruen
  • Shopping Towns USA: The Planning of Shopping Centers by Victor and Larry Smith

Online Sources: