E-commerce giant Amazon Logistics plans to build a 180,000-square-foot warehouse that would create hundreds of jobs in La Marque, the company and city announced on Thursday.
The new “delivery station” would open later in 2021, according to a statement.
It’s the product of months of work, some done in secret through third-party intermediaries, and was landed without tax incentives from the city, officials said.
A major boon to the city’s economy and workers, Amazon’s arrival also will help La Marque define its future growth, Mayor Keith Bell said.
The warehouse is planned for 4975 Interstate 45 on empty land near the Team Mancuso Powersports dealership and the Abundant Life Christian Center.
The facility will be the first delivery station in Galveston County. Delivery stations are designed to speed up so-called last-mile deliveries, the point where packages are moving from warehouses to people’s homes.
The facility would provide “faster and more efficient delivery” of packages for customers, Amazon officials said.
The warehouse will create hundreds of full-time and part-time jobs, officials said. The jobs include everything from drivers to management positions and will pay at least $15 an hour, the city said.
The announcement was the culmination of months of work, officials said.
“The city of La Marque is proud that Amazon chose to call us home for this distribution center,” City Manager Tink Jackson said. “The additional jobs within our city will provide great new opportunities for our citizens.”
Much of the pre-development work was done in secret, with officials agreeing to sign non- disclosure agreements about the development before Thursday’s announcement. Some planning work was handled by third-party firms that didn’t bear any apparent connection to Amazon on public documents.
The city didn’t offer any special incentives to the company, and the company didn’t ask for any, city spokeswoman Colleen Martin said. The site where the warehouse will be built already was zoned for commercial use and didn’t require any variances, she said.
The city anticipates some residents will have concerns about traffic in the area, and it will hold community meetings about the project in the near future, Martin said. Amazon’s delivery trucks are expected to leave the facility after the morning rush hour and return after the evening rush, she said.
Along with providing well-paying jobs, the deal will help define La Marque’s growth, Bell said.
“It says that La Marque is a place of tremendous opportunity,” Bell said. “It says that La Marque is a place whose doors are open for the business community. It says that La Marque is a place that endeavors to work seamlessly and productively with corporate partners.”
County officials applauded La Marque’s work to bring Amazon into the city. Along with jobs, the warehouse will help offset residential property taxes, said Dane Carlson, the county’s director of economic development.
Amazon in recent days has announced plans to build delivery stations in cities across the country from Orland, California, to Haverhill, Massachusetts, and in the Bronx, among many others.
Amazon in September announced plans to open 1,000 delivery hubs in cities and suburbs across the country, according to Bloomberg.com. The plan is part of an effort to compete with Walmart Inc. and to fulfill a goal of providing same-day delivery to customers who subscribe to the company’s Prime service.
The city already has approved building permits for the warehouse, officials said. Work could begin at the site as soon as next week, Amazon spokesman Daniel Martin said. The company hopes to have the center operating by the summer, he said.
Amazon typically begins hiring employees for its delivery stations a few months before operations commence, Martin said