Ikea purchased just over 144 acres of land in McCord Development’s master-planned Generation Park in Houston, according to documents filed with the Harris County Clerk's office. The long-rumored deal is the Swedish furniture giant’s second in the city in two years.
In 2016, Ikea leased 1 million square feet near the Port of Houston in the largest industrial transaction that year. Since then, several dozen warehouse and distribution center projects have broken ground across the Houston metropolitan area as major brands like Amazon, Best Buy and Costco moved in or expanded.
Generation Park, a 4,000-acre commercial development at the center of the Lake Houston community 25 miles northeast of downtown Houston, is expected to be home to between 1.2 million and 1.5 million square feet of distribution space for Ikea, according to the Houston Business Journal, which first reported the land purchase.
Ikea has been on an expansion kick in the United States, last month saying it will open a new-concept retail store in Manhattan this spring. The company has a network of 10 regional distribution centers supporting 48 U.S. stores, according to an August statement announcing a lease for industrial space in Lakeland, Florida, to support markets in Tampa, Orlando and Miami.
A new Ikea warehouse at Generation Park would be a boon for the project, which is also home to energy industry technology provider TechnipFMC’s 173-acre campus and the headquarters and industrial facility for GHX Industrial, a distributor and fabricator of gaskets and hoses. British chemical transportation and storage firm Stolt-Nielsen Limited is planning a future campus at the site.
Houston-based McCord has been aggressively courting deals at Generation Park, even going so far as to make a plea last year for Amazon’s second headquarters directly to chief executive Jeff Bezos by flying a plane near the firm’s Seattle offices with a banner that read, “Jeff, Houston is calling.”
What will happen to Ikea’s current lease at Cedar Port Industrial Park is unclear. Typically Ikea steers clear of leases, preferring to own its industrial and distribution space. The Cedar Port lease is only for five years with an option to exit early, meaning Ikea could theoretically leave the space by 2019 and move its operations to its newly purchased land within Generation Park.
With information published by Kyle Hagerty