When the EXPO concept started, it grew slowly - then it changed into the Design Center idea as a way to shift gears, and the multi-tiered idea in the new Metropolitan development was yet another new plan. Now, all the HD EXPO and Design Center stores nationwide are being closed. So if you're looking for anything, check it out, as you might find something at discount prices (of course, they were high to begin with, so now they are getting to reasonable levels).
As to the store itself, it's a bit of an upscale Home Depot, with a higher-than-normal selection, and staff that is trained a bit better to help you with the selection and design process. On that front, I give them a big thumbs up. On the pricing, not so much - it's really high. Only now, as they approach 50% or so, is it getting to something that most people will find reasonable.
Just make sure you pull into the lot from the main entrance off of Charlottetowne, not off of Kings - otherwise you have to navigate to the bottom level, which is a nightmare (if you're going to Target on the upper level, then Kings is fine).
Then, they are also shutting down. Maybe once the store is completely closed they will open it up as a standard Home Depot to compete with the Lowe's on South Boulevard, as I'm sure people in the area would like it - there isn't another that close to Uptown. Of course, I can't imagine too many people hauling lumber into their uptown condos!
HD expo design service
When we looked into this last summer, Home Depot Expo said we could have 1 hour with a designer for free. There was a flat fee for more time, which would be taken off if you bought something like $750 in materials. (I don't remember the exact cost.) You could go in, do the free one hour thing and see how you like it. But go in and make an appointment now -- at the time, it would have taken about 3 weeks until we would have been able to talk with a designer.
Seeking feedback: Expo Design Center, Emeryville
I want to remodel parts of my small condo's bathroom & kitchen (both, for my personal enjoyment, and, with eye to increase resale value). BTW my bathroom is higher priority than my kitchen.
I'm impressed with the design ideas I've seen at Home Depot's Expo Design Center in Emeryville. (I'm in nearby Oakland.) But, since I'm not familiar with this field, their prices seem too pricey for me. Yet I did a quick search of "Expo" for past comments this forum; I see some folks find them reasonably priced or not much higher than elsewhere. Hm. Well, I've already secured a $40K "equity line of credit" loan, although I really rather not come close to spending that much