ST. PETERS, Mo. - St. Louis didn't land Amazon's second headquarters but the company is still coming to the metro area. Amazon plans to open its first Missouri fulfillment center and it'll be located in St. Peters.
“We’re excited to continue growing our team with our first, state-of-the-art fulfillment center in Missouri,” writes Sanjay Shah, Amazon’s Vice President of North America Customer Fulfillment, in a statement. “Our ability to expand in Missouri is the result of two things: incredible customers and an outstanding workforce. Amazon is committed to providing great opportunities for employment and creating a positive economic impact for the region.”
The new fulfillment center will create more than 1,500 full-time jobs for the area, with workers picking, packing, and shipping small items like books, electronics, and toys. The only other Amazon facility in Missouri is a sorting center in Hazelwood.
"It's something we consistently talked about and that's jobs, jobs, jobs; said that from day one," said St. Peters Mayor Len Pagano.
The center will be built on a wide open space in the Premier 370 Business Park at Highway 370 and Truman Road. Construction on the 800,000 square-foot facility is scheduled to start in two weeks, with a projected completion date of May 1, 2019.
The location and business park area was a perfect fit for Amazon. A city representative said Amazon could get nearly $8 million in local and state tax exemptions.
"Right now, as farmland, that property is only generating a few hundred dollars of taxes a year," saidSt. Peters City Administrator Russ Batzel. "So then we bring in a campus like this with $250 million. The remainder of the taxes goes to city and district."
Like the fulfillment center in Edwardsville, Illinois, these are full-time jobs with great benefits. Full-time Amazon employees receive competitive hourly wages and a benefits package including health insurance, disability insurance, 401(k), and company stock awards starting on day one. The company also offers up to 20 weeks of maternal and paternal paid leave and innovative benefits such as Leave Share and Ramp Back, which give new parents flexibility with their growing families.
"We've got low employment in St. Charles. When more jobs come in, it creates more demand for those jobs, which will then raise the rates for workers," said St. Charles County Executive Steve Ehlmann.
This isn't just a big win for St. Charles County.
"This facility is going to be two minutes from the Missouri River bridges. It's going to be accessible not only to St. Charles, but St. Louis County, City of St. Louis, and the entire region," Ehlmann said.