Portland’s Beloved #PDXcarpet Soon To Be Replaced
Sometimes, certain elements of your home or other places you go just stick with you. For many Portland area residents, past and present, the carpet at Portland International Airport (PDX) is one of those elements.
The little geometric windmills in blue, teal, and purple make us nostalgic for the 80’s, and they should, because that carpet was designed in 1987 and has covered the floors at PDX since 1993. It’s based on the view of the intersecting runways from the tower. Travelers have been hustling across the carpet for more than 20 years, and unfortunately, it shows. In every terminal you can see significant wear, stains, tears, and piecemeal repairs, so in June 2013 the airport decided that it’s time for a replacement.
But, over the past several years, this carpet has become an icon of the Rose City, and for many, it represents home.
Travelers from every corner of the globe stop to take photos of their feet firmly planted on it, and share their travel stories on social media. This has become such a phenomenon that the carpet and the locals who love it have earned PDX the honor of being named America’s Best Airport by Travel and Leisure Magazine. (Other things like on-time flights, good restaurants, and the convenience to MAX also helped.) But it certainly doesn’t stop there. You can now buy t-shirts, hats, socks, bike helmets, phone cases, neckties, and coffee mugs adorned with the carpet pattern, and die-hards have even gotten it tattooed on their bodies. Portland’s adoration for its ill-fated airport carpet has become a full on love affair.
Needless to say, the next carpet design will have some big shoes to fill, and there’s no doubting it will be heavily scrutinized.
They say the new carpet, which like the old is based on shapes and colors found around the airport, should be installed this Winter. The colors may be darker and the shapes more rounded, but something about it does capture the mood of the 1987 design.
“The Port hopes that travelers will grow to appreciate elements of the new carpet design over time, just as much as the old,” says Annie Linstrom, a spokeswoman for the Port of Portland.
Want more #PDXcarpet?
- Read Portland Monthly Magazine’s Ode on a Carpet
- Follow @pdxcarpet on Twitter
- Shop for commemorative items with the ‘87 pattern on Google
Replacing the carpet in your own home? Drop by the Carpet USA showroom to see the largest selection of carpet styles in the Portland area!