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Today, Amazon, one of the world’s largest companies, held a ground-breaking in Bessemer, Alabama, to celebrate the construction phase of the new fulfillment center that will bring more than 1500 jobs to Jefferson County.
The facility is expected to open in mid-2019.
According to Amazon officials at the groundbreaking, the facility itself is a massive undertaking.
Here are the numbers:
Size of the facility: 2.5 millions square feet of operating space
The new building footprint: Size of 15 football fields
Concrete needed to build facility: 82,000 cubic yards
Steel needed : 10,000 tons of steel
Contractors used to build the facility: Over 2200 contractors
Additionally, in June, the Birmingham Business Alliance commissioned an economic analysis prepared by the Center for Business and Economic Research, Culverhouse College of Business at The University of Alabama. They study predicts the new facility’s annual economic impact on Jefferson County will reach $202.7 million. Statewide, the study anticipates an annual economic impact on Alabama at $232.1 million.
Most importantly, more than 1500 new jobs will be created.
The facility will house Amazon’s latest technology in robots. Inventory picked, packed and shipped at the state of the art facility will be smaller sized items, such as books, toys, health care products and electronic devices. Amazon expects the center to open before the holiday season in 2019.
“This is a great day for Bessemer, a great day for Amazon and a great day for the state of Alabama,” said Alabama Governor Kay Ivey, who was on hand at the groundbreaking.
Amazon’s new minimum wage
Coinciding with the Bessemer event was the nationwide announcement by Amazon to raise their minimum wage for all U.S. workers to $15 per hour starting next month. According to various news reports and at the public meetings before city and state incentives were approved, Amazon employees at the new Bessemer site were expected to receive full benefits on day one and an average wage of $14.65 an hour.
The new national minimum wage increase announced by Amazon will be a boon for the new employees at the Bessemer facility.
Stay tuned for the next big news from Amazon in 2019… the official ribbon cutting to open the building!