Friday, September 28, 2012

Ikea's store in Merriam by the numbers

Posted By on Fri, Sep 28, 2012 at 9:40 AM

The Great Wall of Merriam is no longer the biggest tourist attraction.
  • Facebook: Ikea USA
  • The Great Wall of Merriam is no longer the biggest tourist attraction.
Ikea made it official yesterday with its press conference announcing a fall 2014 opening for a new store in Merriam, Kansas. The Swedish furniture retailer is purchasing the scuttled Merriam Village development from Developers Diversified Realty. The strip mall will be razed and a new two-story building will be constructed on the 18-acre site.

While the Merriam Village development was selected, Ikea also looked at the Great Mall of the Great Plains in Olathe, the former Bannister Mall site in Kansas City, Missouri, and the Falls (where Bass Pro is located) in Independence. But the location in Johnson County, just off Interstate 35, proved to be the most attractive. After the jump, The Pitch looks at the new store by the numbers.

349,000. That's the square footage of the store. In another measurement, it's about 7 acres of retail.

350. This is the number of employees that Ikea estimates will work at the new store. That's one employee for every 1,000 square feet or roughly the size of a Plaza apartment.

Six. Ikea expects to pull in customers from six states. That raises the out-of-state visiting population to Merriam by roughly five states.

62,000 Kansas City-area residents are already customers of Ikea, which confirms one simple fact: Kansas Citians love to drive.

42. That's the number of couples who will have unexpected fights daily in the aisles over curtains, glassware and Ektorp.

Three. You need to eat only three Swedish meatballs to know if ordering them in the attached 450-seat restaurant was the right or wrong decision.

1,200 parking spaces. Wear some comfortable shoes. You're going to be doing a bit of walking.

Two. Ikea is planning stores in Merriam and Miami for 2014. It's not hard to figure out which prospective site executives will be lobbying to visit before then.

50. Half a buck. Hot dogs are impulse buys at the Exit Bistro, going for 50 cents. It's the Costco effect. You feel better about spending a few hundred dollars if what you buy comes with an economy-priced hot dog.

15. That's the approximate mileage between Ikea and Nebraska Furniture Mart. Your move, Buffett.

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