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Wouldn't it be great if all of Powells got a facelift? What if the whole perimeter was pedestrian friendly? What if you could access World Cup directly, rather than spending any more time on the small sidewalks that put you uncomfortably close to Burnside traffic? What if they put some effort into the interior design as well as the exterior, so it would lose a little of that college bookstore feeling? And even if they just added another story or two, maybe then they could put Powell's Technical Books into Powell's proper, rather than being banished to those odd park blocks. And Powell's shoppers could always use a little extra parking....


Please don't change Powell's. While glamorous and expensive, there is something somewhat depressing about the state of the Pearl. Am I now a heretic? Are the PDC gods going to strike me dead? The train yards, the elevated on ramp, the warehouses, are all gone. Powells was there with them all, and it still stands. Its rennovation on the north side made it fit the Pearl. But the entrance on the south is wonderful, old, not glamorous, and fitting. In short, I find it lovely.


Jonathan, you make an excellent point. Portland traditionally has in some areas of town a kind of hallowed seediness that is disappearing. I'd hate to see that spirit no longer part of the urban fabric. I also agree that I'm not a huge fan of the Pearl architecturally -- at least in terms of new stuff.


Powell’s is loved for what it is: unpolished, unpretentious, and unapologetic. Changing something that works runs a big risk. So maybe adding more on top makes sense, and I do like the idea of bringing in the tech books, but tampering with its seediness seems ill advised.

But that having been said, I've always cringed at the sight of that horrific, huge, red-and-black-on-white text sign that sits above the Burnside entrance. It’s a typographer’s nightmare. Nearly anything would be an improvement.

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