EXCLUSIVE: Ikea Looking to Build Store in Warwick, RI
Tuesday, January 09, 2018
GoLocal has learned from multiple sources that Ikea, the Swedish furniture and home goods store, is looking at Warwick, Rhode Island as a potential site for a new location. Presently, there are 47 stores in the United States.
According to one high placed City of Warwick official, who spoke with GoLocal on the condition of anonymity, representatives of Ikea have contacted the city and begun to analyze different locations.
RI on Ikea Map
One location is near the Warwick and West Warwick border along Route 2. For Rhode Island’s retail landscape, Ikea would be a game changer.
Ikea stores are huge — the recently announced Marietta, Georgia store is 300,000 square feet and it is the second store location in the Atlanta area. A Canadian store now being developed at Dartmouth Crossing near Halifax, Nova Scotia is 380,000 square feet.
In comparison, Home Depots average about 100,000 square feet and Walmart Supercenters are about 150,000 square feet.
In New England, Ikea has two stores. One Ikea is located in Stoughton, Massachusetts and the other is located in New Haven, Connecticut.
This is not the first time Ikea — or developers hoping to bring Ikea to the Warwick area — have made noise in the Warwick, Route 2 area. According to Warwick officials, this time is different and more significant. At a time when retailers are closing at a record pace, the addition of an Ikea would be a boon to the retail mix in Rhode Island.
There are substantial challenges to locate an Ikea store location as the physical footprint for the facility is 25 to 30 acres on average to meet the needs for parking.
The Ikea culture is very different from Bob’s Store’s discount approach or Cardi’s “next day delivery” offer.
“The team at IKEA believe that value only comes from one place, which is the heart. Småland, in South Sweden, was where the company’s founder was born and raised. It can be easily recognized as the source of IKEA shared values. Their shared values, which are all apparent in the lifestyle, attitudes and customs of the place where it all began,” according to Ikea’s branding. Their values include:
According to Ikea:
“Drawing from its Swedish heritage and respect of nature, IKEA believes it makes business sense to minimize environmental impacts and contribute to a low-carbon society. IKEA evaluates locations for conservation opportunities, integrates innovative materials into product design, works to maintain sustainable resources, and flat-packs goods for efficient distribution.
IKEA also will evaluate potential on-site power generation to complement its current U.S. renewable energy presence at nearly 90% of its U.S. locations.”