Amazon.com Inc. will establish a new cross-dock fulfillment center in Stafford County, serving as an East Coast supply chain hub and creating 500 jobs, Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam announced Tuesday.
The 630,000-square-foot facility at the Northern Virginia Gateway industrial site in Stafford will be responsible for the beginning of a supply chain where products from third party vendors are sorted, repacked and distributed to other Amazon distribution centers. It will be the second cross-dock fulfillment center located in Virginia. The first, a 650,000-square-foot facility in Chesapeake, will open in 2022.
Located in Stafford’s Centreport Parkway area, the new Amazon facility will be operational by the second half of 2022. Virginia competed with Maryland and North Carolina for the project.
The 500 jobs created in Stafford will join an existing 27,000 jobs Amazon has already created in the commonwealth. The e-commerce giant has promised to create 25,000 jobs alone by 2030 at its HQ2 East Coast headquarters in Arlington. More than 3,000 employees have already been hired for HQ2, which is under development.
The first Amazon fulfillment operations center opened in Virginia in 2006 in Sterling and more than 20 fulfillment, sortation centers and delivery stations have opened in Virginia since. A 3.8 million-square-foot robotics fulfillment center in Suffolk and a processing center in Chesapeake were announced in March 2020. Another robotics fulfillment center in Henrico County at Richmond International Raceway is also set to open next year.
“Virginia’s strategic location, extensive infrastructure networks and world-class port provide Amazon continued opportunities for growth in the commonwealth, and we welcome this new cross-dock fulfillment center in Stafford County,” said state Secretary of Commerce and Trade Brian Ball. “The facility will create 500 new jobs and play an important role in the company’s East Coast supply chain, further cementing Virginia’s role as a leading transportation and logistics hub.”
The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with Stafford County and the Port of Virginia to secure the project for Virginia. Amazon is eligible to receive benefits from the Port of Virginia Economic and Infrastructure Development Zone Grant program for the project. Funding and services to support the company’s employee training activities will be provided through VEDP’s Virginia Jobs Investment program.
The path of a package from Amazon goes from the fulfillment center to line-haul trailers, which are taken to Amazon Air sites, then to sortation centers and then to delivery stations or partner facilities, such as a post office. Then packages are sorted according to delivery route, loaded onto Amazon trucks and delivered to customers.
“Stafford County established the Centreport area as a strategic logistics and distribution employment center and focused on attracting major brands,” Stafford County Board of Supervisors Chair Crystal Vanuch said in a statement. “This location provides its users with direct access to I-95, placing light industrial business traffic adjacent to Stafford Regional Airport. With five large Centreport properties currently in permits, construction or opening, the plan’s success is its own reward, and we are proud that Amazon selected Stafford as the site for its cross-dock facility.”
“Amazon is making significant investments throughout Virginia that are helping to drive job growth, fuel the economy, and move cargo through the Port of Virginia,” Virginia Port Authority CEO and Executive Director Stephen A. Edwards said in a statement. “This strategic decision to build a cross-dock fulfillment center in Stafford County capitalizes on the supply chain efficiencies and service delivery offered by this mid-Atlantic location and the Port of Virginia. We value Amazon’s decision as we continue to grow our collaborative and beneficial relationship.”