Arcade Independence Square, Colombo

4.1
#7 of 32 in Shopping in Colombo
The Arcade Independence Square is a shopping complex housed in a group of renovated buildings including the former Jawatta Lunatic Asylum and the former Western Provincial Council Building. It was built as a part of the Independence Square Redevelopment programme initiated by the Sri Lankan Government.HistoryThe building was originally constructed in 1889, as a lunatic asylum, Jawatta Lunatic Asylum (also known as the Cinnamon Gardens Asylum), for Rs 450,000. In 1875 the then Governor, Sir William Gregory, based on the recommendations of the Principal Civil Medical Officer, Dr. W R Kynsey, decided to build a new aylum to replace the existing facility at Borella. Issues over the location and design meant that construction did not commence until 1879, following the intervention of the new Governor, Sir James Longdon. Even then further construction of the building was delayed until 1882. The building consisted of an entrance block, two patient wings (accommodating 400 patients) connected to the central administration and a boundary wall. Longdon defended the cost of the facility stating at the time, "The asylum is a series of one-storey buildings of the plainest type. The walls are of brick plastered, because of the climate plastering is found requisite for the preservation of buildings. There is no expensive ornamentation, or indeed any ornament at all, unless a short ungraceful and inexpensive tower over the entrance designed for the clock can be called an ornament. The enclosing walls are of ordinary cabook, such as is universally used for garden walls in Colombo." The Jawatta Asylum suffered from overcrowding within years of completion, housing over 500 patients. In 1917 a new larger facility was constructed at Angoda, with all the patients being transferred from Jawatta by 1926.
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Arcade Independence Square Reviews
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  • October 6, 2017
    High end branded shopping complex along with resonable priced food court, Not many options though. As I can remember they have burger king as well. For kids they can see the fish down the glassed tile...  more »
  • October 5, 2017
    Old Colonial building turned to high end shopping district. Not a bad idea after all. All the good brands and companies have their shops in it. I saw a few high end jewelry shop as well. It is just a ...  more »
  • September 23, 2017
    I used to pass this place even before the construction began .Never imagined that this would become a wonderful architecture. Specially at night , view is spectacular along with near by Independence s...  more »
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  • June 10, 2017
    A beautiful afternoon at Independence Square. Well maintained and an opportunity to see the old colonial architecture. The expansive green spaces, buildings and history captivate. No entry fee, ample parking, clean and safe. Lots to see or just hang out and enjoy the views. My second trip to Colombo and both times I took the time to visit this historic location. I would add it to the must visit locations when in the capitol city of Colombo.
  • July 6, 2017
    Great place to shop. Some upmarket brands and a good cinema with 2 small screens. Plenty of things to see and a place with a lot of history. Some good clean toilets if you need to use them are located in 2 areas. A state bank and a private bank ATM are also located within the premises. Plenty of places to eat and enjoy the evening.
  • June 12, 2017
    Very beautiful place. Ample parking at main entrances and rear entrances from independent square. Renowned Branded shopping malls. Very good place to do family shopping. Seasonal offers are available for credit cards.
  • July 14, 2017
    Urban beauty you can see it here. Beautiful Garden. Luxuary shopping malls. It's gives good relax sitting in there.
  • July 11, 2017
    Contains luxurious and branded shops. Many delicious food options as well. Movie theater is located on 1st floor.

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