Rendering of what the new Ikea storefront will look like, via Ikea
After teasing us last week with news that they were in the “preliminary” planning stages of opening a city-center store in New York City, Ikea has today announced, that they will, in fact, open their first Manhattan store in spring 2019. The IKEA Planning Studio–a delivery-only store concept that focuses on “smart solutions for urban living and small spaces”–will open at 999 Third Avenue, right across the street from Bloomingdales at 59th Street and just over the Queensboro Bridge from Long Island City where Amazon is readying to bring 25,000 employees.
Google Street View of 999 Third Avenue
The location makes perfect sense. With the two-year-old Second Avenue Subway, more people are crossing through the East 59th Street corridor, and as previously mentioned, the quick cab ride to Long Island City makes it a hop, skip, and jump away from all the new Amazon fanfare. Plus, this area of the Upper East Side has long been Manhattan’s design district, with the D&D Building on the block south. The retail space at 999 Third Avenue became vacant this time last year, leaving a three-floor, 17,350-square-foot space empty. Owner the Zucker Organization has been marketing it as several different spaces as opposed to one large one, but Amazon has said they will take the entire space.
Ikea says the “Planning Studio concept was co-created with New Yorkers who provided input to IKEA throughout the planning process” and that it will “give customers the opportunity to discover, select and order IKEA products for delivery to their home, which is what urban residents want and need.” In other words, you won’t be able to take any items home with you.
This will be Ikea’s first city-center store in the entire country. They have already opened a Panning Studio in central London, and plans are already underway for their largest-yet, a 5,000-square-foot location in Paris. These stores are part of a larger restructuring plan, which includes slashing 7,500 jobs in an attempt to focus on delivery and digital efforts through efforts such as “new lower-priced shipping and delivery, Click & Collect, financing, and TaskRabbit assembly services.” Over the next two years, they will open 30 new stores in city centers; other U.S. cities being considered are Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, and San Francisco.
In a press release, Ikea says the Red Hook, Brooklyn store will also be remodeled and noted that they recently opened a new customer fulfillment center in Staten Island for online deliveries.
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Neighborhoods : Upper East Side