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Ikea to Build New Store in Costa Mesa

Retailing: Location will be one of its biggest on the West Coast. The furniture company will eventually close Tustin site.


Ikea plans to build one of its largest West Coast home furnishing stores in Costa Mesa and close its store at the Tustin Marketplace, company officials said Tuesday.

The furniture retailing giant will build a 300,000-square-foot store on an empty 20-acre site that the company will buy from South Coast Plaza owner C.J. Segerstrom & Sons.

Financial details of the land purchase were not disclosed.

The new store, which is expected to open in early 2001, could help lure home furnishings purchasers to the area, something Segerstrom is trying to do at the former Crystal Court section of South Coast Plaza.

A large Macy's home furnishings store and a Crate & Barrel Furniture store are scheduled to open there by the end of next year. Before the Crate & Barrel decision was announced in January, some observers had speculated that Ikea might move into Crystal Court.

Home furnishings is "a new emphasis" for that section of South Coast Plaza, Segerstrom spokesman Paul Freeman said.

The new Ikea store, just off the San Diego Freeway about 1 1/2 miles away, "is a complement to that, no question," Freeman said.

Ikea's new store will be double the size of the Tustin store, and the Costa Mesa site is more central to Orange County and the beach communities, said Michael McDonald, Ikea Properties president. The store will feature a 300-seat restaurant.

"With the [Tustin] store we have today, it's really impossible to expand it to what we really want to do," McDonald said. "And with South Coast Plaza being so successful, hopefully that will spill over to us as well."

McDonald said the company's lease at the Tustin location runs until 2004.

He said he expects Ikea to remain there for at least two years--the time it will take to get city approvals for the Costa Mesa site and to build the store along the freeway, east of Harbor Boulevard.

Employees at the Tustin store are expected to be transferred to the new location and up to 100 new employees could be added, he said.

The Ikea site is part of an 86-acre development being planned by Segerstrom on property known as Home Ranch, the Segerstroms' initial homestead.

The rest of the land will be used for office buildings.

McDonald said the Costa Mesa Ikea and a new store being built in the San Francisco area will be the biggest Ikea stores on the West Coast.

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