Amazon to Open New Fulfillment Center in Florida

The online retailer's expansive new facility in Auburndale, Fla., will measure more than 1 million square feet.
An Amazon fulfillment center. Image courtesy of Amazon

Amazon is once again expanding its footprint across the U.S. The e-retailer announced it will build a new fulfillment center with more than one million square feet in the central Florida town of Auburndale. The spec industrial facility will be developed by Prologis and will employ more than 500 people.

The announcement comes days after Amazon revealed plans for its first fulfillment center in the Canadian province of Quebec. Located within the Lachine borough of Montreal, the company said it expects the new property to come online in time for the 2020 holiday season.

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A spokesperson for Amazon told Commercial Property Executive that construction has begun on the new facility, which will be located at the junction of C. Fred Jones Boulevard and Berkley Road in Auburndale, a town within the Lakeland-Winter Haven metropolitan area and about halfway between Tampa and Orlando. Major thoroughfares in and around Auburndale include Interstate 4 and several state highways.

“There are many contributing factors that we consider when determining where to place a new fulfillment center, including an engaged workforce and great local support – and we’ve found both in Florida,” an Amazon spokesperson told CPE.

They added that the new property will feature energy efficient, zero emission PIT equipment. 

Amazon already employs more than 13,500 full-time workers in the state of Florida, according to the company. In a statement, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis said the new distribution center is a “big win” for Polk County and the entire state. Auburndale Mayor Tim Pospichal echoed that sentiment, saying in a statement that the city is looking forward to the opportunities the new facility will bring to area residents.

Market moves

According to a Q3 Cushman & Wakefield report on the Lakeland, Fla. industrial market, leasing activity increased significantly in the third quarter, hitting 1 million square feet leased, marking the strongest quarter in more than a decade. Four major deals led to the milestone, including Conn’s 413,437-square-foot lease at the I-4 Logistics Hub and Walmart leasing 360,000 square feet at a former JCPenney building.

The Lakeland area is currently experiencing a construction boom and is one of the top markets for new construction in the Tampa Bay region. Cushman & Wakefield expects construction of new product to slow down as developers lease up current large vacancies. The Interstate 4 corridor is expected to be the main catalyst for leasing activity for the rest of the year.