We want Spam, not meatballs: Museum's 'Ikea-like' design stirs debate


What's blue and yellow, and famous for its meat products? No, it's not Ikea. It's the design for a new Spam Museum in Austin, Minnesota.

But the first look at plans for the new museum has prompted a spirited debate on the Austin Daily Herald website, with some commenters criticizing conceptual drawings from RSP Architects for looking too much like an Ikea store.

"It is wretched!" one commenter said. "Only the Main Street side has any brick to connect to it's neighbor [sic]. The rest of it looks like IKEA and Crate & Barrel had an illegitimate child."

But what else could the designers do? Some commenters responded. After all, the famous Spam cans are also blue and yellow, and shades not far removed from the furniture giant.

A more common criticism among commenters was that the building does not fit in well with surrounding downtown Austin.

One said: "How much money has the downtown spent trying to get rid of this style architecture? Now we are reintroducing it with no regard to the surrounding buildings?"

The 14,000-square-foot building design was voted through by the city's Port Authority last week, the Business Journal reports, as parent company Hormel Food Corp. moves the museum into downtown from its current site at Hormel's headquarters.

Hormel sent a copy of the designs to BringMeTheNews, but said it is still subject to change.

"The important thing to note is that this is not the final design and is still in concept form," a spokesman said. "There will likely be some modifications to it."

Next Up

Byron Buxton

Alex Colomé wastes Buxton's diving catch, clutch bomb

The Twins' bullpen woes continued in a loss to the A's.

Northern Metals

Firefighters battling large blaze at Northern Metal site in Minneapolis

The fire sent a plume of thick smoke into the skyline.

Screen Shot 2021-04-21 at 12.10.00 PM

Charges: St. Cloud woman maced, fatally stabbed man in alley

A 36-year-old man was pronounced dead at St. Cloud Hospital 32 minutes after the 911 call was made.


Gasthof's building in Northeast Minneapolis is for sale

The restaurant opened in 1992 and has been closed amid the COVID-19 pandemic.


1 dead in single-vehicle crash in Kandiyohi County

Deaths on Minnesota roads are up approximately 20% from the same point last year.

Irwin Jacobs home

Neighbor sues to block estate from dividing billionaire's Lake Minnetonka property

The estate of Irwin Jacobs wants to build six new homes on the late businessman's property.


In the better burger battle, does Culver's trump In-N-Out?

A website says Culver's is far superior to In-N-Out.

George Floyd mural

Darnella Frazier, who filmed the video of Floyd's arrest, reacts to guilty verdict

Frazier's video challenged the initial narrative of Floyd's arrest presented by the Minneapolis Police Department.

Burnsville police shooting

Man fatally shot by police near I-35W in Burnsville is identified

The suspect killed in the incident is from western Wisconsin.


SPAM-maker has one of country's best internship programs

Previous interns have given the Austin-based company the thumbs-up.