An Amazon warehouse near Brétigny-sur-Orge, France.
Photo: Philippe Lopez / AFP (Getty Images)

Ready for Amazon to become even more ubiquitous in your everyday life? The e-commerce giant plans to open from 1,000 to 1,500 small distribution centers in suburban areas Across the country, Bloomberg reported Wednesday, partly stimulated by significant delays in shipping during the novel coronavirus pandemic.

The e-commerce company saw significant delays in shipping earlier this year, in some cases up to a month, as it has tipped over to prioritize high demand essential goods. Amazon sought to follow by hiring hundreds of thousands workers, and according to Bloomberg, he also wants to drag his malignant tendrils further into neighborhoods across the country by setting up smaller delivery centers near terminals.

Amazon typically built or leased outside massive warehouse-type distribution centers that are not located right in the middle of population centers. “Small, fast-delivery warehouses,” as Bloomberg put it, would essentially make Amazon a direct competitor of UPS and people in trouble U.S. Postal Service (which faces massive arrears and devastating cuts by postmaster Louis DeJoy, the axman of the Trump administration). It would push back retail chains as well like Walmart which has started to compete more directly with Amazon in e-commerce and already uses ubiquitous online stores distribution centers.

Amazon declined to comment on Bloomberg plans, but pointed to the growth of its “last mile delivery network”, “Which in Amazon’s case is powered by armies of underpaid entrepreneurs with few labor protections:

The company declined to comment on expansion plans, but said its last-mile delivery efforts are aimed at complementing, not replacing, its longtime partners. “Our dedicated last mile delivery network has just delivered its 10 billionth package since launching over five years ago, and we pride ourselves on providing excellent service to our customers,” said a spokesperson.

Bloomberg wrote that Amazon may choose to assimilate real estate made available by traders he helped drive bankrupt or otherwise closed during the coronavirus pandemic. News agency sources said it was a “last resort” plan, but Amazon was more likely to raze buildings and start over. than trying to convert malls in warehouses:

… TThis option is only a last resort, said those familiar with the company’s plans, who requested anonymity to discuss an internal matter.

Department stores such as J.C. Penney are often two-story and lack sufficient cargo capacity, they said, which means they need a complete makeover to accommodate an Amazon delivery center. Additionally, shopping center leases with existing tenants often prohibit the owner from introducing a delivery center that could spoil the shopping experience, and city authorities might not quickly approve industrial use in a retail area. by retail. Dead malls are more likely to be bulldozed to make way for an Amazon warehouse, as they did in the Midwest, than an Amazon delivery post that grows into a half-empty mall to coexist with Kay Jewelers and Cinnabon.

The mayor of Kearny, New Jersey, Alberto Santos, told the news agency that he noticed a “strange gentrification effect” in which Amazon “[keeps] choosing sites, which drives up the prices for everyone. »This in turn operates warehouses owned by small businesses further away from residential areas, Santos said.

“The regulations are definitely steadfast right now,” Nico Larco, professor of architecture at the University of Oregon and expert in urban land use, told Bloomberg. “The warehouse no longer wants to be tucked away in an industrial district. He wants to be right next to you. But when these things happen in our neighborhoods, they are unsightly. “


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