Written by David Castellon
You may not have noticed, but Amazon quietly expanded its footprint in Fresno late last year.
The new facility has likely created upwards of 400 new jobs, as evidenced by a permit filed with the city.
Over the summer, Amazon laid a big, obvious footprint in the city by opening its newly built 855,000-square-foot fulfillment center in the south end of the city, off Central and Orange avenues.
By its sheer size and the large Amazon logo on its front, the building is hard not to notice. But what you many not have noticed is a not nearly as big, nondescript building amid other industrial buildings less than three miles to the north, in the 2300 block of Cedar Avenue.
In front hangs a small banner sign, and you might have to stop your car and get out to read “DELIVERY STATION” across the top with the Amazon logo beneath it.
This delivery station is one of more than 75 the online giant operates around the country, most fairly close to their fulfillment centers as one of the many methods used to get goods ordered from those centers to homes and businesses.
Many of those goods are shipped via the U.S. Postal service and large private shippers, FedEx and UPS among them.
But for shipments that are close to the fulfillment centers where the packages originated or are routed through them, Amazon often trucks those goods to the company’s delivery stations. From that point, they’re sorted and distributed for delivery, either by local package-delivery businesses contracted to do the work or by private drivers contracted to work through Amazon Flex, an Uber-like service in which people schedule their spare time to make $18-$25 an hour delivering Amazon packages using their own cars.
A company official said hundreds of full-time, part-time and contracted people work at the leased Fresno facility but declined to offer a specific number.
The building is owned by Anheuser-Busch wholesaler Donaghy Sales. A development permit filed by Donaghy indicates a 373-stall parking lot is being built at the site.
Related story: Amazon could open Fresno fulfillment center next month