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LOS ANGELES-Home-furnishing giant IKEA has completed the purchase of 80 acres near the border of Los Angeles and Kern counties and will build a 1.8-million-sf distribution center on the site.

The land is inside Tejon Ranch Co.’s Tejon Industrial Complex, just north of Los Angeles County at the intersection of Interstate 5 and US 99. Though neither IKEA or Tejon Ranch officials would disclose the purchase price, they said construction of the project—one of the largest warehouse and distribution facilities in California history—should begin within a matter of weeks. About 300 new employees will be needed to staff the development after it opens.

The purchase ends a lengthy site-selection process in which IKEA searched for parcels as far north as Sacramento and as far south as the Inland Empire, says Eric Powers of NAI Capital Commercial’s Encino office.

Powers and a colleague, Tony Beatty of NAI BT Commercial Real Estate in Oakland, represented IKEA in the land purchase. The Los Angeles office of Colliers Seeley represented Tejon Ranch, which recently announced plans to phase out its 150-year-old cattle operations to focus on developing its massive land holdings.

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