First responders gear up for influx of traffic near IKEA store -

First responders gear up for influx of traffic near IKEA store

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ST. LOUIS, Mo. ( -

One of the busiest fire stations in the city is neighbors with the soon-to- be-open IKEA.

The midtown store is set to open Sept 30 and with it, bring large crowds. Fire station 21 is planning for the IKEA opening just as they would cover a special event. Captain Greg Favre said with the push of a button, they can change the signals at the intersection of Forest Park and Vandeventer. 

"We have a light in place we can hit the automatic stop. We can change the signals  in the intersection to slow everybody down or stop the direction we need to stop so we  can pull out and go to the call and come back accordingly," says Favre. 

He said more resources will be out during the peak time of day. Favre also says EMS crews will be on standby as a precaution because of the large volume of people expected to shop at IKEA.

"We want to make sure we are being a good partner with Ikea and coming up with some solutions to allow these units to get out as quickly as they can when they are responding to life threatening emergencies," says Favre.  

Those who live and work nearby have differing opinions on whether the increased traffic is a good thing.

"The intention of revitalizing this area is great. I am certainly not advocating redoing the streets because that would be another headache. I am not looking forward to the congestion," says Karla Scott who works in Midtown. 

"Hard to say. I think right when it opens  there will be a ton of traffic. It will even out. I am for it," said Ted Rubright. 


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