A top Henrietta town official confirms that the well known Swedish furniture company Ikea is apparently considering putting a store in the Rochester area.
Town Supervisor Steve Schultz says representatives of Ikea visited his town last December. While Ikea did not give him an idea of when they might like to consider locating a store in this region, Schultz says he got the impression it might be sooner rather than later.
Schultz says the town of Henrietta offers some advantages to a company like Ikea, including its location and access to major roads.
“The fact that we’re right off the Thruway, right off of I-390, it allows you to draw from Buffalo, Niagara Falls, Syracuse, the Southern Tier; it just provides very convenient access and we’re also centrally located in terms of the greater Rochester area too," Schultz told WXXI News.
Schultz says the Ikea representatives also showed particular interest when told about the number of colleges and universities in this area. Ikea furniture, due to both its price, and style, has been very popular in college dorm rooms.
Schultz says among the sites town officials have suggested would be parcels near Marketplace Mall and the Getinge company property, which has some vacant space on East Henrietta Road. There has been no comment yet for Ikea on any potential plans. Schultz does not know if Ikea is looking at any other sites in the Rochester area.
Paul Ellickson is a Marketing Professor at the Simon School of Business at the University of Rochester. He says Henrietta's location would be attractive to a company like Ikea.
“Their whole business model is about making the customer come to them and then drive the stuff back; and so, being by a major interstate is hugely important, so being relatively proximate to 90 (the Thruway) has got to be a huge boon in terms of connecting both people from Syracuse and people from Buffalo and points in between as well, and even further out."
Ellickson also says if an Ikea store did locate here, it certainly would elevate the area's retailing profile.
“In the sense that we have a Costco now, we may have a Whole Foods soon, Trader Joe’s, so it’s clear that many of these premier brick and mortar retailing businesses find this an attractive location," Ellickson said.
The only Ikea stores in New York state now are in Brooklyn and on Long Island.
Ikea released this statement to WXXI News when asked about the possibility of locating here:
"As we endeavor to expand our presence here in the United States we will continue to evaluate opportunities as they arise. However, IKEA has not announced any plans for a store in the Rochester area."