Nearly 3,000 homes proposed for Ikea site

Former flat-pack furniture warehouse could be flattened to make way for residential tower blocks as Ikea looks to cash-in on Meridian Water, reports James Cracknell

Ikea in Edmonton and (inset) an "indicative CGI" for new homes
Ikea in Edmonton and (inset) an “indicative CGI” for new homes

Up to 3,000 homes could be built on the site of the former Ikea warehouse in Edmonton, according to a new sales brochure.

CBRE Group, an American commercial real estate services and investment firm, is promoting the sale of the Ikea site to investors as “Pymmes Waterside” with the claim that the area could be used to build 2,830 homes as well as 30,035 square feet of space for shops, offices, schools and a library.

When Ikea closed in August 2022, 450 jobs were lost. The warehouse itself is now being used as a flexible events space, although this is only intended as a ‘meanwhile’ use.

It sits in the centre of the wider Meridian Water housing zone where Enfield Council has long had a target to build 10,000 homes, but previous plans were drawn up when flat-pack furniture and Swedish meatballs were still being sold from the site.

Ikea last year opted to close its Edmonton store instead, citing a shift to online sales as well as the council’s residential project as part of the reason – with the firm likely wanting to capitalise on rising land values thanks to Meridian Water.

While no planning permission or application currently exists for the conversion of the Ikea site into housing, the land is being marketed on the basis that thousands of homes could be built there, championing its position adjacent to Pymmes Brook, which the council has plans to naturalise from its current concrete channel.

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The sales brochure states: “As part of the engagement with Enfield Council officers, a masterplan and vision concept has been prepared to determine the potential development capacity of the site.

“The masterplan demonstrates the site’s capacity for delivering up to 3,000 new homes, along with other social infrastructure (two primary schools), a strategy employment building and a range of other service uses.”

It continues: “Award-winning architects Sheppard Robson have explored development options to maximise the site’s potential […] The masterplan is intended to represent a ‘deliverable’ base case for the development.

“The scheme proposes ten buildings ranging in heights between five and 30 storeys. The scheme also proposes the provision of c.650 car parking spaces and associated open space and landscaping.”

As well as the Ikea warehouse, the site includes its surrounding car parks, which in total extend to nearly ten hectares.

It remains unclear how the potential construction of up to 3,000 homes on the Ikea site would impact total housing delivery across Meridian Water as a whole, since the council has still not made its overall masterplan for the project available to the public, despite repeated demands by councillors and Freedom of Information requests from members of the public.

In the council’s draft Local Plan, published in 2021 before Ikea was closed, 5,000 homes in total were allocated to the western half of Meridian Water, which includes Ikea. The other 5,000 homes are expected to be delivered after 2039 and remain dependent on the Greater London Authority agreeing to de-designate the eastern half of Meridian Water as strategic industrial land.

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