If you think Ikea stores are big, confusing mazes, how about a 27-acre Ikea neighborhood? The furniture chain recently purchased the acreage outside London to develop a community called Strand East. They plan to model it after older, walk-able neighborhoods in London, but with a big dose of Ikea’s style and philosophy.
According to the company’s housing development division, the project will be priced for middle-income families, and yes, the development will be laid out in the maze like manner of Ikea stores. It’ll include more than a thousand homes and apartments, as well as office space and a hotel. But the homes aren’t for sale, they’re only for rent. Instead, Ikea will act as a “neighborhood government,” and oversee everything from community events, to trash pickup. This may sound unusual, but it’s actually pretty common in Sweden for corporations to build and own entire communities.
So, what’s the only thing that’ll be missing? An Ikea store! So if residents want to furnish their home, they’ll have to strap their new beds, tables and chairs to the roof of their car and assemble them with an Allen wrench when they get home, just like everyone else.