Northeast Florida Roundup
Getting a logistics boost in Jacksonville
Jacksonville economic development officials had several reasons to tout Amazon’s plans to build an 800,000-sq.-ft. fulfillment center, starting with the 1,500 jobs it expects to bring — “the single largest jobs announcement in Jacksonville’s history,” says Jerry Mallot, president of JAXUSA Partnership.
The Amazon facility also is significant because in a city that touts itself as a logistics center, most of the big job announcements over the past two decades in Jacksonville have focused on back-office functions for major financial services firms, including Citigroup, Bank of America and Deutsche Bank. Walmart added 600 logistics jobs at its Northeast Florida distribution center in 2007.
Also noteworthy is Amazon’s location in north Jacksonville, because most of the city’s major job expansions have come in office parks on the Southside. While the Jacksonville area’s unemployment rate has dropped below 5%, documents filed with the city for the Amazon project show some neighborhoods near the site have unemployment exceeding 15%.
Amazon expects to open the facility in time for the 2017 holiday season.
Cushman & Wakefield’s analysis of Jacksonville area’s population growth and economic impact in the past year:
1.48 million Population, up 1. 8% over the previous year
$243,000 Average home value, up 18.4%
$24.4 billion Annual retail sales, up 4.1%