The Kansas City region is getting an Ikea store and we’re not:
The home furnishings company, which has 38 stores in the U.S., is announcing at a press conference this morning that it is putting a store in Merriam, Kan. The store is expected to open in fall 2014.
So what does that mean for the prospects of a much desired store in St. Louis?
Joseph Roth, an Ikea spokesman, said the Kansas City store does not diminish St. Louis’ chances.
“They are completely separate trade areas in our mind,” he said. “We still recognize the customer base that exists for us in St. Louis. We just have not committed to a time frame yet or found the perfect site.” (stltoday.com)
This is pretty logical if you think about it, the nearest Ikea to the St. Louis region is the Bolingbrook, IL location in the Chicago region — that’s 273 miles from St. Louis. The closest Ikea to Kansas City, MO is Bloomington MN at 431 miles (Bolingbrook, IL is 486 miles from KC).
I know numerous people here that have driven to the Bolingbrook Ikea in the morning, shopped, and driven back to St. Louis that night, others have stayed in a nearby hotel overnight. Either way, we have much better access to Ikea than people in the Kansas City region do — for now. And once the Kansas City Ikea opens in Merriam, KS two years from now it’ll be roughly 15 miles closer to St. Louis than the Bolingbrook, IL Ikea. A change of pace for those who usually head north on I-55 for flat-packed furniture.
This summer many thought an Ikea was going to come to Richmond Heights because a developer had proposed it. Based on the 6 Ikea locations I’ve visited over the last+ 22 years I doubt we would see an idea within 15 niles of downtown St. Louis. They are a big box retailer that locates along wide exurban arterials on sites highly visible from the highway.
For my last big order I shopped through one of the two local companies that make regular trips to Bolingbrook — I had them bring back items I’d never be able to transport anyway.
My hope is the Kansas City location will be close enough to civilization that it will be on a bus route so I can visit without having to rent a car — a perfect way to make sure I don’t buy too much.
– Steve Patterson