Living Wright: Can H&M, Trader Joe's, Costco please open in Tulsa?
BY JASON ASHLEY WRIGHT World Scene Writer
Thursday, August 30, 2012
8/30/12 at 4:41 AM
Go to Jason Ashley Wright's BlogOriginal Print Headline: Retail dreams
My semi-lucid dream of having a Nordstrom in Tulsa has evaporated.
Heckfire, we can't even keep a movie-rental store, it seems. Love me some Redbox, but I miss the human interaction. The late-great Blockbuster at 15th and Lewis was like my "Cheers" - everybody knew my name. Well, not the customers or a few of the clerks, but two people did. That's two more than Redbox.
Whatever, back to Nordstrom - or, specifically, our lack of one. The good news, according to World business writer Robert Evatt's recent story, is that other stores, like Swedish-based H&M, might come to Oklahoma. Sort of. OK, the story didn't actually say H&M might come; company officials said they're looking at "smaller cities within the region." Still, that's not a no like other stores have given.
Where would we put an H&M, though? Seems like everyone's attention is on the Brady Arts District, the progress of which I've been stalking for months - driving by Guthrie Green really slow, probably alarming construction workers. One has actually started waving at me.
But I'm not sure where an H&M would fit. Or a Costco, which I'd also love to have in town. That, and a Trader Joe's. I've never even been inside a Trader Joe's, but everyone's talking about it, so it must be awesome. I'm picturing it as a Whole Foods, just with pirates. Not sure how accurate that is, but it would be cool.
So would an IKEA. When I shopped the one in Austin last fall, I bought three candles, a set of dish towels, a 20-plus-piece set of plastic storage containers and a cutting board, all for less than $14.
Although the Swedish purveyor of inexpensive furniture, decor and Swedish meatballs (no joke, they have a little bistro) wasn't mentioned in that story I read, I think we need to slam their website's Ask Anna automated customer service thingy and inquire "When are y'all coming to Tulsa?" I tried, and she kept saying, "my knowledge is currently being updated." Oh, well.
Restaurant chains seem more interested in coming to Oklahoma - quel surprise. Aren't we in some Top 5 list for Best Fat States Ever or something? It's a no-brainer that certain franchises without "salad" or "health" in the name have their eyes set on Tulsa.
What we need - preferably in my 'hood north of the University of Tulsa - is a restaurant with a salad bar that accepts payment on a sliding scale. Seriously, some families in my ZIP code need help, and that includes healthier dining options.
These families might also need a Nordstrom rack. Maybe I'm projecting, though.
Costco, clothing retailer H&M and grocery chain Trader Joe's are among the dream list of chain stores Jason Wright would love to see come to Tulsa. Bloomberg file