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City leaders give go-ahead for Ikea store in Merriam, Kansas

 A rendering shows the proposed Ikea store scheduled to open in Merriam, Kan., in 2014.A rendering shows the proposed Ikea store scheduled to open in Merriam, Kan., in 2014.

MERRIAM, Kansas — The Merriam City Council has unanimously approved plans for Ikea to build its first Kansas City-area store here, with an opening planned for fall 2014, the retailer said.

Ikea, which announced plans for the store in September, said the new location will increase the Swedish retailer's presence in the Midwest.

Ikea U.S. President Mike Ward said the company is "thrilled and honored" by the support for the project from Merriam city officials and staff. Located eight miles southwest of Kansas City, Mo., the 349,000-square-foot store will be along Interstate 35 at the Johnson Drive exit, on 18 acres to be purchased from DDR Corp.

The retailer said it will feature nearly 10,000 exclusively designed items, 50 room settings, three model home interiors, a supervised children's play area and a 450-seat restaurant serving Swedish specialties.

Ikea said it also is evaluating the potential for on-site power generation at the planned store. The company generates renewable energy such as solar power at 90% of its U.S. locations.

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