IKEA breaks ground on Jacksonville store
Swedish furniture maker IKEA to open Jacksonville store in 2017
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Swedish furniture giant IKEA broke ground Thursday on its Jacksonville store off Interstate 295 and Gate Parkway.
Mayor Lenny Curry and other city leaders attended the groundbreaking ceremony at the store's location, which will be south of the St. Johns Town Center.
“This location will help bring the unique IKEA family-friendly shopping experience closer to many Jacksonville-area customers who currently can only shop at IKEA stores elsewhere or online,” said Lars Petersson, IKEA U.S. president. “The store also will attract new customers from North Florida and southern Georgia who value good design, good function and affordable prices, but have not had a chance yet to shop at IKEA.”
IKEA's Jacksonville store, slated to open in fall 2017, will be housed in a 290,000-square-foot building with 950 parking spaces on a 25-acre property.
IKEA announced in October that it had hired Marcobay Construction Inc. to serve as construction manager for the Jacksonville work site.
"Behind you, you see heavy equipment cranes," Curry said. "That's a sign of a city on the move. So I'm excited about that. I would say that the people of Jacksonville expect to see more of this."
Store plans reflect the same architectural design for which IKEA stores are known worldwide, the store said in a news release.
In addition to more than 500 jobs that are expected to be created during the construction phase, IKEA will hire approximately 250 workers when the new store opens.
Candidates interested in working at IKEA should begin looking online next spring at IKEA-USA.com, where they can apply for positions in home furnishings sales, interior decoration, customer service, safety and security, cashiers, maintenance, goods flow, receiving, warehouse and stock replenishment. IKEA Jacksonville also will offer more than 50 food service opportunities in its restaurant, Swedish foodmarket, Café Bistro and coworker cafeteria.
IKEA will also evaluate potential on-site power generation to complement its current U.S. goal of a renewable energy presence at nearly 90 percent of its U.S. locations.
There are currently four IKEA locations in Florida, but none in North Florida. There are 41 IKEA stores in the U.S. and more than 300 stores worldwide.
Copyright 2016 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.