Ground has broken on the first major retail outlet of a massive industrial development in the northwestern suburbs of Sydney amid expectations a decades long home building boom will drive massive demand for furniture and household accessories and help stimulate a localised boom in bulky-goods retail construction activity.

In a ceremony attended by state premier Barry O’Farrell, the first sod was turned on what will be a 36,000 square metre IKEA store on 73,550 square metres of land on the site of the $1 billion Sydney Business Park development in Marsden Park.

Set to take about 15 months to build, the store will be IKEA’s third outlet in Sydney and will serve as the anchor store of a 90,000 square meter homemaker centre which is also set to include a 3.5-hectare Masters site and a 3.4-hectare Bunnings site as well as a Costco store and McDonalds and Shell outlets.

The levels of investment in the Park come amid expectations a massive housing boom in Sydney’s North West Growth Corridor will drive retail activity in areas such as furniture, hardware and household accessories and equipment and will underpin demand for associated ‘big box’ retail space.

Between now and 2035, O’Farrell says around 200,000 people will move into an estimated 70,000 new homes, adding that development in the area is being supported by infrastructure investment such as the North-West Rail Link.

Speaking at the ceremony, O’Farrell welcomed the start of construction on the store, which he says sits on a site four times the size of the Sydney Cricket Ground.

“IKEA’s expansion at Marsden Park is fantastic for the local economy and is a result of the NSW Government’s policy of unlocking new land for housing in Western Sydney,” he said.

Though no indication was given about the number of employment positions are expected to be created during construction, O’Farrell says the new store will generate around 320 retail jobs once it opens.