IKEA hits construction milestone with addition of trademark blue paneling

290,000-square-foot store will be fully enclosed by winter [PHOTO GALLERY]

Crews install the blue paneling.

Last updated on May 15th, 2019 at 04:55 pm

Wisconsin’s first IKEA store is a little blue.

The Swedish retailer’s signature blue paneling that lines the exterior of every IKEA store is being installed along the steel frames in Oak Creek, marking another milestone for the project and keeping the store on schedule for a summer 2018 opening.

The blue paneling will surround the structure by November, and construction crews are hoping to have the building completely enclosed by winter, said Joseph Roth, spokesman for IKEA.

The 290,000-square-foot store will be built on 29 acres at the northwestern corner of Interstate 94 and Drexel Avenue on land owned by Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co. It will anchor a larger, mixed-use development, although future tenants have not yet been announced.

Chicago-based Pepper Construction is the contractor on the project. Check out a report on the construction from WISN-TV Channel 12, a media partner of BizTimes Milwaukee.

Up to 500 jobs are expected during construction. The store will employ 250 people when it opens.

IKEA is opening stores in Indianapolis, Jacksonville and Dallas this year and the Oak Creek store next year. There are several stores slated to open in 2019, Roth said.

“Every project has some bumps and hurdles along the way,” Roth said. “Here, the hurdle was finding the site and taking 10 years to do it.”

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