Does the perfect neighborhood that suits everyone exist? As an experiment it’s interesting, and also for bloggers and other media it’s nice. But can IKEA do the same to urbanism as what it did to interior design? Is it able to create neighborhoods that are as comfortable, cheap, good-looking and popular with the majority as its furniture? Perhaps it can, with its design skills as well as its capacity to organize big areas, as IKEA did to its shops that almost turned into complete villages themselves.
On the other hand, we should conclude that ‘one-size-fits-all urbanism’ will not be good for the variety and attractiveness of cities in general. Imagine the same number of people to live in an IKEA house as owning a Billy cupboard… These neighborhoods are not meant to solve problems or improve the city to some extent. In essence they are there to earn money for the company. The simple idea of IKEA is to give the people what they think they want...I think this neighborhood will feel the same as everything else from IKEA as soon as it’s realized. It looks better in the brochure than in real.
Can the kit-of-parts for which IKEA is known be rolled out at an urban scale?
Given that a place is made out of people, I doubt that this development will be as soulless as the author suggests. Then again, can a built environment provided by IKEA do the community that will inevitably grow up in the place justice?