Ikea-stye furniture
Ikea-stye furnitureMorguefile

While its second store outside Netanya is still being rebuilt after a devastating fire last year, Ikea on Tuesday announced plans for a third Israeli store – this one to be built in Kiryat Ata, a highly populated suburb of Haifa. The announcement Tuesday confirms a previous general commitment by Ikea to build a third store in Israel, announced several years ago.

In the announcement Tuesday, Ikea Israel said it had purchased of a 97-dunam lot at the Ata Junction, at the entrance to the city, for NIS 55 million 55 (nearly $15 million). Construction is to begin soon on a 24,000 square meter showroom and warehouse; the entire project will cost NIS 300 million ($80 million). The store should be open for business sometime in 2014, the company said.

The other half of the lot will be bought by the Shikun u'Binui construction company. Ikea Israel and Shikun u'Binui propose to jointly develop the lot, and officials for both companies said they did not anticipate any objections from government officials to the deal.

Ikea Israel Director-General Ron Hadasi of Ikea Israel said the chain's original Israeli store at Netanya, 15 minutes from Tel Aviv on the coastal road, should re-open in March. The other store is located in Rishon LeTzion, serving the southern and central cities of Rehovot, Ashdod, Ashkelon and even Modiin, thanks to new highway 431. Jerusalemites still have to travel, but they can turn off Route 1 to highway 431 and get to Rishon in 40 minutes.