Video: A Look at the Red Hook Ikea, 4 Years Later

A new video called “Ikea Brooklyn: 4 Years Post-Controversy” looks at whether local fears about the big-box store coming to the neighborhood—including that it would gobble up too much prime real estate and cause traffic jams—have been proven true. The filmmaker, whose website is here, comes to the conclusion that the gorgeous waterfront park Ikea built is sadly underused. Think that’s the case?
Ikea Brooklyn: 4 Years Post-Controversy [theresident/Youtube]

28 Comment

  • The caption on this “film” should be: “brought to you by your friends at Occupy Wallstreet”. What a bunch of nonsense…

  • My favorite aspect of this is how the narrator goes from corporate to hood in the same sentence “Ikea tried to mitigate concerns from members of the surrounding community by poppin off on some ol ‘job creashun’ ish”

  • I love how they say the land “could have been used for locally owned businesses”. Well, it wasn’t being used that way, now was it? What did they expect, that someone would come in, buy the land, build homes and stores and then just give them to the current residents? The entitlement issues with people who object to projects like the Red Hook Ikea are incredible.

  • I live in Downtown Brooklyn and have been to Ikea during the week and the weekend. I have never seen the parking lot look that empty. Obviously the person that put this video together has their angle but I bet if they had bothered to film to parking area directly under the building it would have been fairly full.

    Also, I have seen many people at the Borough Hall station either asking where the Ikea bus is located or heading back into the city with their Ikea products.

    It is a very one-sided video.

  • I love to ride my bike all around the Ikea area, it is like a hidden treasure. Going on all the piers, down Columbia to the hook, all thru Red Hook.

    truly a hidden treasure exploring bike ride.
    I love the Ikea Plaza

  • I love to ride my bike all around the Ikea area, it is like a hidden treasure. Going on all the piers, down Columbia to the hook, all thru Red Hook.

    truly a hidden treasure exploring bike ride.
    I love the Ikea Plaza

  • I don’t love the way IKEA handled opening it’s store and even I think that video is bad. It misses the real and valid point that can be made. ,

  • They should be ashamed of themselves! This film is the worst kind of one sided propaganda.

    She must have filmed on a weekday, before the store opened, because I go there all the time, and it is packed and bustling, and there are people in the park, and Manhattanites taking the ferry.

    This has been great for Red Hook and good for Brooklyn and the city as a whole, and hats off to Ikea for building a wonderful waterfront park faster and better than the city could have done.

    I have been a Red Hook resident for the past 12 years and was in favor of this project from the beginning. I looked forward to the convenience of shopping there just a few minutes away, instead of schlepping to NJ, and i knew that Red Hook residents needed the work.

    This store had done absolutely nothing detrimental to the area, it has only made it better.

  • The soundtrack falls somewhere between “don’t go in the basement!” camp and scanning post-apocolyptic rubble/oil-covered ducks.

  • When did she shoot the footage for this video? 8am on a Tuesday? I am in Red Hook every weekend to go to Fairway, Ikea always has a steady stream of customers. And while the park is under used, I’ve been there many times- it’s never as empty as in this video. You can tell from the trees this was shot in winter.

    And I find it incredibly demeaning to say that the Ikea workers can have no pride in their work since profits go to Sweden. Is that the only reason to enjoy your job, to see the profits go to a local person? That is such a ridiculous argument.

  • Red hook was particularly precious during the whole Ikea battle. Smarty pants Ivy League grads, the parkslopewannabe mommy brigade and the off-their-rockers civic types educating the public housing folks on the evils of particle board.

  • It looks to me like they shot this on a weekday where it’s a lot slower. Weekends are often the busiest and most crowded time at Ikea Red Hook. Also Ikea pulls in so much people from outside and other parts of Brooklyn, that otherwise would not have treked to the area if there was an empty lot or a local business there. That influx alone brings people with cash willing to spend at local businesses aaround there too. Look at the Barclays center, it’s about to do the very same by pulling outsiders to there and spending their money in the area.

    Very narrow-minded film.

  • It looks to me like they shot this on a weekday where it’s a lot slower. Weekends are often the busiest and most crowded time at Ikea Red Hook. Also Ikea pulls in so much people from outside and other parts of Brooklyn, that otherwise would not have treked to the area if there was an empty lot or a local business there. That influx alone brings people with cash willing to spend at local businesses aaround there too. Look at the Barclays center, it’s about to do the very same by pulling outsiders to there and spending their money in the area.

    Very narrow-minded film.

  • This video is propaganda at it’s best. What a bunch of one sided b.s.

  • Every day, and ESPECIALLY on the weekends, a well known day trip is to take the Ikea ferry from Manhattan and visit the local shops on Van Brunt Street. So evil. I know many local shop owners and all have told me how many extra customers come in from the Ikea ferry. People who read somewhere about the Ikea ferry and how charming Red Hook is and how you can make a day out of visiting the local shops, eating at the local places- Baked, Red Hook Lobster Pound, Hope & Anchor, Fort Defiance, etc., and then return the same picturesque way they came. For shame Ikea, for shame.

  • rolling my eyes so hard at this. the land was available and ikea bought it, and they created something nice that is well maintained, along with a beautiful park. that kind of infrastructure is a lot better than what was there.

  • CGmodern

    i actually love that little park and ride my bike there and read the paper/have a bite whenever i can. how is it ikea’s fault that the people of red hook dont use it?

  • CGmodern

    i actually love that little park and ride my bike there and read the paper/have a bite whenever i can. how is it ikea’s fault that the people of red hook dont use it?

  • We often bring my elderly mother in law here, because it’s all on one level and we can get her from the car to the water front without a lot of headache. She enjoys watching kids, shoppers, pigeons, you name it. I agree, this had to be taken on a weekday morning when it was 17° F.

    This is a complete and utter luddite piece of crapoganda.

  • Ha ha. “22 acres of prime waterfront property.” So prime, in fact, that it was just sitting there, available for purchase. Love this. “Suck the neighborhood of it’s inherent culture.” What culture was on the empty lot?
    And not to pile on, but not only is she a terrible narrator, she’s also a terrible video and audio editor. Some terrible hissing that makes the whole thing even more annoying.

    Why are so many people against progress/improvement.
    And say what you will about the aesthetics/build quality, but the stuff itself in IKEA is affordable and decent enough, and provides a pretty affordable option for local residents. Plus, the food is dirt cheap. I still go there for lunch sometimes.

  • This video is the worst of the worst. Hard to know which part was most offensive — the filmmaker’s argument that this gorgeous and accessible park, carved out of vacant lots and wasted land, is somehow a detriment to the neighborhood? Or that the jobs that Ikea created are somehow worse than the zero jobs that were on the site when Ikea purchased the land? Or that the introduction of the ferry in of a transit-starved neighborhood is…what? Yeesh.

  • Even if you hate IKEA and never shop there, when this place opened, the ferry instantly became about the easiest way to get to Red Hook, even if you’re coming from other parts of Brooklyn. That alone makes it a plus.

  • “how long will it be until we have no authentic neighborhoods left, America?”

    This crap is hilarious.

  • This video is garbage… looks more like a student submission for a summer internship at Fox News.

  • bryanx

    I like Ikea.

    Sometimes when I’m hungry (and lazy), I’ll walk over and get me a 50 cent hot dog. Last weekend a group of us Red Hookers were walking around the hood, then suddenly decided to take the free ferry ride to Manhattan.

    An hour later we came back.

    Wednesday rib night. I loves me some ribs.

    50 cent hot dogs, free weekend boat rides… what’s not to love about the Swedish Embassy?

  • ianmac47

    There are many unused, empty lots around this IKEA store and plenty of room for new development for years to come. If that kind of development ever happens — despite not having a subway line — then IKEA will likely sell out the land it sits on for a profit and move someplace cheaper and further from the urban core.

  • ditmas_parker

    OY. So overly dramatic. I’m a huge fan of ‘authentic’ neighborhoods, but this filmmaker has a very one-sided and frankly unsupported view. I guess she wanted million dollar condos to go there instead of a home store. And what’s with the anti-Swedish rhetoric? Does she not shop or buy goods from other countries? I wanna go to her house and check her closets. ; )