ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOX) – It’s been the stuff of urban legend for years: ‘will St. Louis get an IKEA store?’
The answer now — yes.
Sources tell KMOX that the Swedish retailer will build a store in St. Louis’ Central West End neighborhood at Forest Park Avenue and Vandeventer. The story was first reported on development blog nextSTL.com.
“People think its a huge deal because of the name,” he said on KMOX’s Mark Reardon Show. “The huge deal is the development patterns that are changing in our region and what it means for the city — whether it’s IKEA or anyone else. This is a store that does $100 million in sales per store, they get a million people in the door a year per store.”
Ihnen said the presence of IKEA will undoubtedly cause more chain stores, like Home Depot and Target, to consider opening within the city limits. He added: “other than Hampton Village, the city has zero shopping retail destinations.”
Once the project breaks ground, Ihnen said to expect construction to take about 18 months.
IKEA is expected to make an official announcement next week, but for now the company is keeping coy.
Joseph Roth, an IKEA spokesman said in a statement: IKEA currently has nothing new to report regarding any plans for a store in St. Louis and, despite what others may have said, we have not announced or confirmed anything yet.
In late August, Jeff Rainford, Mayor Francis Slay’s Chief of Staff, alluded to a “major international retailer” setting up shop in St. Louis in a KMOX interview.
Urban legends over the years have had IKEA rumored to go to St. Ann, Fenton and Richmond Heights.