the developers of Assembly Row, have agreed to purchase the 12 acres of land in Assembly Square owned by IKEA, and they plan to build a supermarket there along with office and residential space, according to an announcement from Federal Realty Investment Trust.
Although Assembly Row's developers and IKEA have signed an agreement, the deal will be not become final until after Federal Realty Investment Trust conducts due dilligence on the site and its development potential, a process that could take months, the announcement says.
The sale price was not disclosed according to the announcement and the Boston Globe.
The IKEA parcel will add land to Assembly Row's $1.5 billion development in Assembly Square, which will contain residential, retail, office and restaurant space. Among other things, Federal Realty Investment Trust plans to bring high-end outlet stores and a new movie theater to its development. The six-acre waterfront park along the Mystic River is getting a facelift, and the MBTA is building a new Orange Line stop in the neighbohood, which should be open in 2014.
As for the IKEA parcel, "The vision for the 12 acre parcel would include mixed use buildings including office, medical office, residential, and a regional grocer as a major element in the overall design plan," Don Briggs, Federal Realty Investment Trust's top executive at Assembly Row, said in a statement.
IKEA, which first purchased land in Somerville's Assembly Square in the 1990s and was long speculated to bring one of it's massive flat-pack furniture warehouse stores to the city, decided in July not to build there.
Somerville Mayor Joseph Curtatone, speaking in early December about the imminent sale of the IKEA parcel, said it would "open up opportunities" in the area.
In a statement issued about the purchase and sale agreement, Curtatone said, "I could not be more delighted about this announcement, including the grocery store component. We were sorry to lose IKEA, which has been a responsible development partner, but Federal’s plan will be even better for our city.”