Amazon has had a minor presence in Michigan for awhile, with some jobs at their downtown Detroit office, a facility in Brownstown Township as well as their holding in a Grand Rapids-based audio book company.
This new project would be on a much larger scale. Amazon, according to multiple reports, is opening a large regional fulfillment center in the Detroit suburb of Livonia.
The facility, according to Crain’s, would be at 13000 Eckles Road, a former General Motors-owned property. Outlets conflict as of this writing on whether there’s a hard open date, but WDIV is reporting that it would open in October of 2017.
There are differing reports on the size, with Crain’s being told that it’s around one million square feet by county Executive Warren Evans.
According to a memo from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, the state’s chief business attraction arm that administers programs, grants and performs due diligence on incentive applicants for the Michigan Strategic Fund, Amazon was considering both Ohio and Indiana for the development. They were searching for a location within 350 miles of their midwestern customers. At least 1,000 jobs would be created and as many as 500 could be added in the future.
There’s a number of incentives coming together for the project. Amazon has applied for a $7.5 million performance-based grant to the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC). Reports say Wayne County has promised an additional $1.6 million in road improvements to lure the company. The city of Livonia, according to the Freep, has also offered a tax abatement.
“Amazon’s expansion in Michigan is a definitive sign and endorsement of the state’s logistics capacity and strategic supply chain location in the Midwest,” said Steve Arwood, CEO of Michigan Economic Development Corporation when reached for comment.
“We are especially pleased that Amazon joins a distinguished list of corporations that take pride in being excellent and responsible corporate citizens in Michigan,” said Arwood. “The new warehouse is a significant employment boost, and welcome addition to the Michigan economy.”
Amazon has approximately 200,000 employees around the globe. Amazon is the largest internet retailer in the world.
This comes on the heels of the news yesterday that 1,300 Michigan employees will be laid off by General Motors at the Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant, the only plant GM has inside the city of Detroit. Although GM says they will try to find jobs for those workers, car sales are slowing and buying preferences are shifting to SUVs.
Editor’s Note: This story is updated with additional information from the MEDC.