The Scandinavian furniture giants has opened a brand new £60 million store in Sheffield this morning, following an announcement of the opening date back in August. This year IKEA is celebrating 30 years in the UK, and the opening of IKEA Sheffield marks the retailer’s 20th store.
Over 400 new jobs have been created thanks to the store opening – with 90% of the team having been recruited from the local Sheffield and South Yorkshire area.
Sheffield City Council was expecting similar numbers on the roads to those normally experienced during the Christmas holiday period, and photographs across social media have shown traffic to have been builing throughout the day towards Sheffield in anticipation of the grand opening.
Work on the project began in late 2016 after Clugston Construction secured the contract to work on the 340,000 sq ft flagship store.
Ikea is the only store in the country to have a tram stop, Carbrook, on its doorstep and shoppers are being encouraged to use it as an alternative to beat the traffic queues.
IKEA Sheffield is the retailer’s most sustainable store to date and has achieved a BREEAM* ‘excellent’ accreditation. The design incorporates a number of sustainable technologies including photovoltaic panels and rainwater harvesting as part of the store’s commitment to achieving 100% renewable energy by 2020. The store is also equipped with electric vehicle charging points on site providing renewably generated power for EV vehicles.
Gillian Drakeford, IKEA UK and Ireland Country Manager, said: “Today is an important milestone for us, with IKEA Sheffield being our 20th store in the UK. The opening of IKEA Sheffield marks the continuation of a significant period of growth for our business. As we celebrate our 30th anniversary in the UK next month, we remain committed to building a strong and trusted brand whilst continuing to bring IKEA closer to the many people. In addition to IKEA Sheffield, we will be opening two new stores in Exeter and Greenwich before the end of 2018.”
Store manager for IKEA Sheffield Garry Deakin, said: "We are absolutely thrilled to be opening our doors to the city of Sheffield today as we know that people in Sheffield have long been anticipating our arrival“
"Both myself and my talented team are looking forward to welcoming the people of South Yorkshire to the store, where they will be able to discover our unique shopping experience and inspirational home furnishings expertise."
The retailer celebrated the opening with a ribbon cutting ceremony hosted by IKEA UK & IE Country Manager Gillian Drakeford alongside IKEA Sheffield Store Manager Garry Deakin and a number of local dignitaries.