Definition of arcade in US English:



  • 1A covered passageway with arches along one or both sides.

    • ‘Farmers sell their melons and other locally-grown produce on Saturday mornings, and an arcade with classic Spanish-style stone arches runs along one side.’
    • ‘The arcade became an important passageway between Fox Street and the square.’
    • ‘As a result, nobody, including the owner of the building, has the right to block walkways under an arcade by putting up vending stalls, they said.’
    • ‘Internal walkways are two-level trellised arcades which visually unify the entire Hebrew Union Complex.’
    • ‘A relatively wide walkway under the arcades has been built for the local people and visitors.’
    • ‘Water would play an important role, often in the form of crossing channels or a pool in which porticoes and arcades linked to the surrounding house or buildings would be reflected.’
    • ‘The arcade leads through to a playground, also designed by the students.’
    • ‘Where the plans change most, according to the revised design currently on display at City Hall, is in the removal of two pedestrian arcades which link the shopping centre with O'Connell Street.’
    • ‘A covered arcade and walkway could be created to link the supermarket to the main market area and the area outside the east of the covered market could feature a coffee shop and terrace.’
    • ‘And they designed a market square to help invigorate the city, connecting it to a nearby shopping center through a glass arcade.’
    • ‘The traditional gallery house had covered spaces that opened to the outside through a colonnade or arcade.’
    • ‘The symmetry, smooth finish of the stones, and the perfectly proportional square belltower with Romanesque arcades creates a pleasing image of quiet unity.’
    gallery, colonnade, cloister, loggia, portico, forum, peristyle, stoa
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    1. 1.1 A covered walk with stores along one or both sides.
      ‘a shopping arcade’
      ‘Burlington Arcade’
      • ‘Moves to demolish Stonegate Walk - the L-shaped arcade of 23 shops linked by alleyways to Stonegate and Blake Street - began yesterday.’
      • ‘Full of arcades, shopping malls, supermarkets, and banks, it has no parking system whatsoever.’
      • ‘It's tucked away in a little arcade, four minutes walk from the town centre.’
      • ‘After all, there's no TV or computer in the house we stay in, and little nearby in the way of shops, arcades or night life.’
      • ‘By day you can shop in the many arcades and stylish shops and at night face a difficult choice from the many restaurants.’
      • ‘On her way home she walked past the arcade of shops that lined the quiet street.’
      • ‘Adding to the excitement and jostling are new shopping malls and arcades enhancing the mood what with dazzling illuminations and eye-catching window dressing.’
      • ‘It was gallery time now, so they crossed the river again, skirted round the cheap shops which ruined the arcade, and began to climb up one of the narrow streets that wound their way up the hill to the Church of St John.’
      • ‘The Dixieland Jazz Band played background music, while people browsed the arcade's shops, including a hair salon, a home furnishing shop and a travel agents.’
      • ‘The arcade of shops in the middle of Silver End is to be sold once a development brief has been agreed by the landowner, Braintree Council.’
      • ‘The centre is an ideal size for shopping, but people will not visit unless there is a good selection of shops, arcades and stores.’
      • ‘The Golden Mile is the main shopping area; it has restaurants, cafes, arcades and the Tower.’
      • ‘Just like up here, there were various levels of stores, shopping malls, arcades of all sizes, and of course, homes.’
      • ‘This year's grotto opens on the lower arcade in Canal Walk in the Brunel Centre at 11 am on Saturday.’
      • ‘There are crowds, not huge enough to make the place look more than half full, but crammed into temporary arcades of shops.’
      • ‘The arcade where our little shop is has been earmarked for development.’
      • ‘Not long ago in Penrith, as I walked through the arcade near the George Hotel, I came across a display of all sorts of baskets.’
      • ‘Myself and a friend would routinely spend our afternoons off from school just walking around town, between arcades and shopping malls and book and toy stores.’
      • ‘They head like a vast herd of silent bison for the tightly-packed bars, shops and arcades in buildings bejewelled with neon.’
      shopping centre, shopping precinct, shopping complex
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    2. 1.2Architecture A series of arches supporting a wall, or set along it.
      • ‘The ceilings of the new and larger part of the palace are vaulted throughout, with each support terminating in a stone pendant, giving the impression of a continuous series of blind arcades running along each wall.’
      • ‘The cut-away slab of the arcades had braced the side walls, which are of masonry and partly underground, so subject to lateral pressure from surrounding earth.’
      • ‘The regimented orthogonality of the exterior extends to the perimeter offices, which are edged by a series of arcades lined with redoak veneer.’
      • ‘Today the City Palace is considered one of the most beautiful buildings in Rajasthan, with courtyards trimmed with scalloped arcades, and magnificent glittering mosaics.’
      • ‘Archetypal forms such as porches, arcades and conservatories animate external edges, while courtyards and atria bring light and air into deep plans.’
  • 2

    short for video arcade
    • ‘A room like an arcade where students, during free time, can play games alone or against each other.’
    • ‘They ran ahead to a small restaurant called Frankie's where there was an arcade, a ball pit, a laser tag arena and great food.’
    • ‘In contrast to the Dungeon, the arcade has darker lighting, but they have brighter colours.’
    • ‘There were also the arcades, and as the 70s went by, the arcade games got better and better.’
    • ‘However, visits to arcades on piers or family amusement centres suggest that this form of gambling is no longer conducted within a family environment.’
    • ‘These games occupy a lot of space, and the newest instalment is often installed at the front of street level arcades.’
    • ‘For him, the arcade was extra money, as the game selling side always made more.’
    • ‘The arcade is an indoor playground, a room full of games and toys, and people playing them.’
    • ‘We were friends for a year or two, and I used to love hanging out at his mom's bakery to get free cookies and playing at the arcade next door.’
    • ‘Down the long walkway were two dance clubs, an arcade, a bar, and the casino.’
    • ‘Unlike traditional battle games in arcades - known as shooters or twitch games - Pox depends not on quick reflexes but on the collection of arcana.’
    • ‘The Gaiety, Marshalls Amusements and another arcade all applied for planning permission and got it, but can go no further with the project until the Government makes a decision over licences.’
    • ‘This brings the fun of the arcade into your living room.’
    • ‘It's odd, but the ongoing process of pattern memorization and practiced skill seems more strenuous in my living room than in the arcade.’
    • ‘To give you a sense of this figure, Americans spent less on music, movies, arcades, books and amusement parks combined.’
    • ‘The yelling wasn't uncommon, the arcade was half full, and the owner of the arcade was watching a TV with the volume turned up.’
    • ‘A few months ago we installed computers and Internet dial-up connections for public access at the arcade and in some of the houses.’
    • ‘I recognized a couple of people from school as I followed Adam into the arcade.’
    • ‘It has a restaurant, a bowling alley, an arcade and a pool hall.’
    • ‘On the other side of the arcade, Melissa and Joseph played Street Fighter’


Late 17th century: from French, from Provençal arcada or Italian arcata, based on Latin arcus ‘bow’.