Strand East, London

Ikea subsidiary LandProp is planning to redevelop 26 hectares of industrial wasteland in Stratford, just a stone’s throw from the 2012 Olympic site. The neighborhood dubbed “Strand East” is something of a flagship project for IKEA’s property division and should be a place “where mews-style townhouses sit comfortably alongside creative commercial space. Where beautiful public courtyards open up to piazzas. And waterways weave their way around hotels, restaurants, parks, water taxi piers and cycle paths.”

This mixed-use neighborhood is built with the same middle-class target group as the familiar IKEA stores and LandPROP will be concerned with creating a strong sense of community in this area. Therefore all 1.200 dwellings will be rental units, with LandPROP as landlord. Ikea assures us that the plan, has nothing to do with their retail business, or anything flatpack. There’ll be no megastore and the 1,200 homes will not be built according to Ikea’s BokLok conceptas seen in Gateshead. Nor will it only be possible to find your way around the development by following a continuous line on the floor until you arrive at your destination.

Similar project have been constructed in Poland, Latvia and Romania and the Swedish company now wants to buy up vacant lots in several western European cities and build entire districts from scratch.

Wanna know more? Check the documentary ‘Making Cities, The City of the Future’, by VPRO Tegenlicht and get your ticket for the conference New Towns | New Territories’ on September 27 in Rotterdam. Harald Müller, CEO of LandProp and Wouter Vanstiphout will be amongst the speakers. There are just a few tickets left, so register now! Students and PhD-students have reduced admission: € 45,00 including VAT.