Naughty filthy Ikea

Not really, but metroblogging has the dirt on Portland’s Ikea installation. Honestly, I’ve been looking forward to getting an Ikea for quite awhile now, and now that the date is almost here, I’m starting to look at my closets and corners just a bit differently.

Long ago I linked to Defective Yeti’s genius Ikea Walkthrough (at The Morning News). Here it is again for the local Portlanders.

A bunch of folks seem upset about the new big box store. Well, it’s an unfortunate reality. At least Ikea has some sense of corporate responsibility. It rates strongly for environmental concerns, employee and women’s rights, and they are trying to integrate with our transportation ideals.

As Portlanders we need to continue supporting our local businesses. I proudly have never spent a dime in a Wal-Mart, though I’ve sucked conditioned air in a couple (sadly, I believe that I have spent some cash at some of their other-brand locations. It’s so hard to keep track of who owns who). We have such a great environment, with so many local businesses and craftspeople offering unique goods, it is one thing that keeps Portland strong and unique.

But, the big box store has a place. But remember to swing by your local hardware store before hitting Home Depot (Do it Best is awesome…the folks are helpful way above and beyond any reasonable expectation. Beaumont location, for my experience, but I hear good things about the others). Nothing pisses me off more than somebody proudly proclaiming the money they saved by going to a local store, getting assistance, trying things out, and then going to a discount place for the purchase. Well, there’re a lot of more serious issues than that, but try not to do it! That’s what the small businesses are all about, and you need to fulfill your part of the social contract as well.

Now, there’s the argument about location. Where the heck do you want the Ikea to go? Probably to hell, I suppose. But out there by the airport seems perfect. There’s the Cascade Station, which looks like it was intended to be a bit like the development area near St. Johns. Nice public transportation, lots of land, and such. Perfect for a place that’s going to get a lot of traffic. Out of the way, accessible in several ways, lots of land, and an airport for a neighbor.

So, when you go to Ikea, get some good stuff. But remember the places like Storables (somewhere near NW 14th and Couch) that also sell nifty little plastic cubes.