Emeryville Loses Fight Against Expansion

By Matt Baume
|  Thursday, Oct 21, 2010  |  Updated 12:17 PM PDT
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Emeryville Loses Fight Against Expansion

Ikea in Emeryville is getting solar panels. Photo: Aleeex on Flickr

Hold on to your hats: there are some people who don't love Ikea. Yes, it's true.

The Swedish furniture giant wants to expand its Emeryville operation by opening a new warehouse for pickups. But nearby homeowners are distressed, fearing the impacts that delivery trucks and heavy vehicular traffic could have on their neighborhood.

The City Council debated the expansion Tuesday night, and to the surprise of locals, sided with them and rejected the proposal.

At issue is the location of the 60,000 square foot warehouse. Rather than being located in the industrial section of Emeryville, it would be closer to homes and schools.

Ikea has attempted to meet residents halfway by erecting walls to block sound, somewhat like the labyrinth of blast walls that cover Baghdad to guard against bombers. The company also promised that the structure will have an appealing design, and has been implementing green projects such as solar panels at many of its California locations. But there's nothing they can do about the steady flow of deadly cars and trucks, short of building an underground tunnel.

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