London: Ikea is going to build a new urban paradise
The project for the building of Strand East has been presented to the mayor and the Government
The Swedish giant Inter Ikea is going to build a new urban paradise in London: Strand East neighbourhood. The project include the building of 1,200 houses, 480,000 square feet of offices, a 350-room Marriott hotel, a nursery, as well as restaurants, shops and cafés. The residential complex will be located by the Olympic Park in Stratford.
The site will look like a “mini Venice”, as it will be surrounded by two waterways. Residents will have moorings, water-taxi services and a floating cocktail bar at their disposal.
The British press described Strand East as an eco-development: the inconvenient need for car travel will be limited, rubbish will be disposed of through discreet underground suction tunnels, and a hydro-electric plant will provide electricity to the new neighbourhood.
Inter Ikea started its real estate activity in the 1990s. It launched real estate building projects in Eastern Europe, in Benelux and in the United Kingdom. Harald Muller – the person responsible for Inter Ikea development – is optimistic. He thinks the new residential complex – located in one of the most dynamic and trendy neighbourhood in London will be ready by the time the market is out of the crisis.
The newly-built Ikea homes will be on a human scale. Furthermore, they will not be addressed to the luxury market. The company aims at building affordable low-density town houses and mews homes connected by lovely public spaces such as courtyards and squares.
Demolition work on the 26-acre site has already begun. The company should get outline planning permission by the London Thames Gateway Development Corporation by next autumn and construction should start in 2013.
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