Virginia Governor Ralph Northam has announced that Amazon will build a 650,000-square-foot robotics fulfillment center in Richmond, Va. The project, the first of its kind in Central Virginia, will add more than 1,000 new jobs to Henrico County and is expected to open in 2022.
The development will occupy 119 acres at 5901 Richmond Henrico Turnpike, less than 3 miles from Interstate 95 and roughly 5 miles from Interstate 295. Public records show an entity connected with Hillwood purchased the site in March for $7.7 million. Amazon frequently taps the development company for its construction projects, one of the most recent being the roughly 635,000-square-foot fulfillment center in Alcoa, Tenn.
The surge in online shopping triggered by the onset of the pandemic has fueled demand for industrial space. Amazon’s current real estate expansion is unparalleled, prompting the construction of nine of the top 10 largest industrial projects underway in the U.S. as of March, according to Commercial Edge.
Amazon’s first investment in Virginia, home to the company’s HQ2, was a fulfillment center in Sterling, Va., back in 2006. The company’s local portfolio has since grown to more than 10 fulfillment and sortation centers and delivery stations, 13 Whole Foods Market locations and three Prime Now Hub. In March of last year, the company announced a robotics fulfillment center in Suffolk, Va., and a processing center in Chesapeake, Va., both expected to launch later this year.