As Amazon gears up for a major expansion in Cary, another of its long-anticipated projects could soon open its doors in the Triangle.
Amazon, which last month announced new plans to create hundreds of jobs at a new delivery station in Cary, made local headlines in 2018 when it confirmed plans for a massive warehouse distribution center in Garner.
But, while the 4-story, 2.6 million-square-foot facility at the old ConAgra site was initially targeted to open by the end of 2019, it has yet to get up and running.
That could soon change, as Amazon and its developer, Hillside, have now asked the town of Garner for a “Temporary Certificate of Occupancy” to start staffing and stocking the distribution center.
The initial plans required the completion of roadwork on Jones Sausage Road before the building could be occupied.
But the Jones Sausage Road improvements, according to town documents, have been delayed by “utility relocations and other scheduling conflicts.”
Amazon, according to what it has told the town, plans to stagger shifts initially to limit impacts on the road, and is hoping the town might amend its permit, allowing the facility to open before those highway improvements are completed.
Town officials confirm a public hearing is happening July 13 on whether to amend the permit.
Amazon, through a spokeswoman, said the company is confident that the facility will open in time for the 2020 holiday shopping season.
Spokeswoman Courtney Johnson said the firm hasn’t “officially begun hiring” for the site. But Joseph Stallings, economic development director for Garner, said the company has hosted virtual hiring information sessions to get the ball rolling.
“Other than that, the plant and road are reaching closer to completion,” Stallings said in an email.
The facility is expected to create 1,500 jobs. As a sweetener to lure the project, the state agreed to front $4.5 million toward the road improvements.
Amazon has made several investments in the Triangle, including a 60,000-square-foot delivery station in Durham. And, amid booming demand seen during the pandemic, the company said in March it would hire hundreds more in the Triangle.
In Cary, Amazon said it plans to hire hundreds of positions for its delivery station, which it expects to open by the end of this year.