IKEA submits plans for massive Cary store that could open in 2020

EA announced Tuesday it has chosen Cary for a new location.

The rumors about a store at Cary Towne Center have been swirling for months.

IKEA will be submitting a proposal to the Town of Cary that would completely transform a side of the mall.

Locals who have been to IKEA are excited to have one close by.

“Grab lunch, kick your feet up, take a nap. Feel at home, go to sleep, why not?” said DeCarrio Graham about what he likes to do at IKEA.

The world’s largest furniture retailer is looking to put its second North Carolina store in Cary.

“It was kind of like the internet blew up this morning. Everybody learned that IKEA was officially coming to Cary and they were ecstatic,” said Cary Councilman Don Frantz.

The proposed site for IKEA at Cary Towne Center would be on 15 acres of land. But right now, an unused part of the mall is sitting on that land.

A portion of the mall will be torn down to make room.

In its place will go a 359,000-square foot store, along with a two-story parking structure.

Residents are happy to hear the mall area will be getting a boost.

“When Cary Towne Center came it was the big place to go and now it’s kind of deteriorating and it’s just an old mall,” said Patrick Cooke, who lives in Cary.

“This is a huge economic development opportunity for Cary, not only for the redevelopment and reinvestment this is going to bring to the Cary Towne Center mall site, but the area around that as well” said Frantz.

Building the site will create around 500 jobs, and 300 employees will be needed when IKEA is hoping to open in 2020.

So far there’s been a pretty positive response about having an IKEA in Cary.

But, Frantz said there are some concerns about traffic.

He said the store will definitely attract a crowd, but he thinks its close proximity to Interstate-40 will keep traffic at bay.

Also, he said they have a while to go over plans for the site, and the public will have input.

“Lengthy development review process, then ultimately it comes to Town Council for public hearing, goes to our planning and zoning board for their opinion, review and recommendation. Then ultimately it comes back to council for a decision,” said Frantz.

Frantz said they’re going to try to make the whole process as speedy as possible though to get IKEA up and running.

The site plan for the proposed IKEA (Photo courtesy of IKEA)

Cary Mayor Harold Weinbrecht issued a statement that read:

Cary is very excited to hear of the IKEA proposal on the mall site. The redevelopment of the mall site has drawn a lot of attention from citizens, staff, and council over the months and years and has been a priority. It was a significant part of our Eastern Cary Gateway special area plan which was approved last year. While can’t speak to any specifics of the IKEA proposal, since I don’t have a copy of the plan, I can say that it’s very exciting to see real interest in revitalizing this part of Cary, and I look forward to joining our citizens in learning about the proposal’s details.

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