“Great place to do business:” Oak Creek officials hope IKEA will draw other companies to the area

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OAK CREEK -- You don't have to search far to find signs of construction in Oak Creek these days. And there's only going to be more over the next couple of years. Some are saying IKEA's move to Oak Creek signals growth for the community.

IKEA representatives made it official on Thursday, March 5th. The new store will be located on a large stretch of land along I-94 and Drexel Avenue.

It is slated to open in summer 2018 -- with construction beginning in spring 2017.

Oak Creek

Oak Creek

"It's going to look cooler. We're going to have some really innovative, cool things," said Oak Creek Mayor Steve Scaffidi.

Scaffidi said the IKEA news is just one of a few "mega announcements" in the works.

"We're going to add about $500 million of development. That's a windfall for our revenues. That's a good thing," said Scaffidi.

IKEA

IKEA

Oak Creek's location may play a role in drawing new businesses in.

"It was visible, accessible from I-94 and Drexel Avenue, available for purchase -- and the city has a strong vision for what they want to see along the I-94 corridor. We fit right in with that," said Joseph Roth, IKEA public affairs.

Steve Scaffidi

Steve Scaffidi

Scaffidi said they've focused on developing infrastructure to provide an added draw.

"The market for available land is heating up tremendously. The interchange will be a very hot commodity and I think that's going to ultimately result in some additional cool things that come to Oak Creek," said Scaffidi.

Even companies that aren't new to the area see it as a viable place to fit in an addition.

PPG Industries just pumped $3 million into its Oak Creek plant.

PPG Industries Inc.

PPG Industries

"We're PPG's largest plant in the world and there's still a lot of manufacturing in the Milwaukee area. Great place to do business in Oak Creek now," said PPG Plant Manager Jack Marshall.

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