850,000-SF Amazon Fulfillment Center Under Construction Near Houston

RICHMOND, Texas — (Realty News Report)  – An 850,000-SF Amazon e-commerce fulfillment center has broken ground in Richmond, west of Houston near the Grand Parkway.

Opening in 2021, the project will employ 1,000 people – a sorely needed salve for the Houston-area economy, which has lost over 330,000 jobs since the COVID hit.

The Fort Bend Economic Development Council worked the Amazon deal.

“We’re proud that Amazon has chosen Fort Bend County for this significant investment,” said Fort Bend County Judge KP George.  “The Fort Bend fulfillment center will generate 1,000 high-quality jobs for our community, adding tremendous value to our commercial sector.”

The 93.5-acre Amazon facility, 10507 Harlem Road, is located roughly equidistant from Highway 59 and Interstate 10. It’s just south of the Westpark Tollway, a key east-west route from Loop 610 to the Grand Parkway, the outer loop that has enabled development into what was once considered inaccessible exurbs.

The Amazon site is near Aliana, a master planned community that is now one of the most prolific home building venues in Texas with 4,000 homes at projected build-out.

Trammell Crow Co., the Dallas-based firm founded by Mr. Fred Trammell Crow in 1948 and now a subsidiary of CBRE, is developing the Amazon facility.

“Significant planning has gone into this facility’s design, which allows for extensive use of robotics to further enhance Amazon’s robust fulfillment capabilities,” said Jeremy Garner, principal with Trammell Crow.

The land deal: Tony Patronella and Jeanie Gibbs with Read King represented the seller, Q4 Interests. Stephen Schneidau of Cushman & Wakefield and Matt O’Brien of KBC Advisors represented the land purchaser, Amazon.

The development team: Ware Malcomb is the project’s architect of record, while Graycor Construction Company is the general contractor.

The engineering team: HSA & Associates, Langan  Engineering and Jordon & Skala Engineers. The Harrington Group, Inc. is providing fire protection design.

The move by Amazon, which also has a distribution facility in Hines’ Pinto Business Park in North Houston, is part of the sweeping trend as online retailing gains market share from bricks-and-sticks retail.

The Covid-19 pandemic has hastened the advancement of e-commerce.

“We’re delighted to continue our growth and investment in Texas, with our new fulfillment center in Richmond,” said Alicia Boler Davis, Amazon’s vice president of global customer fulfillment. “This new fulfillment center will create more than 1,000 new full-time jobs, in addition to the more than 20,000 current employees across the state, who receive industry-leading pay and benefits starting on day one.”

Amazon is hiring at a rapid pace. The Seattle-based firm hired 100,000 people in March and announced in April it was seeking to add another 75,000.

In Pflugerville, Texas – a suburb of Austin, Amazon is developing a 3.8 million SF distribution facility on 94 acres near State Highway 130. Construction has begun, but there’s been no formal announcement, even though everybody in town knows it’s Amazon. City officials speak of it with a thin code-name: “Project Charm.”

The new Fort Bend County facility announced by Amazon this week has been common knowledge in parts of Houston’s real estate community for months. If the Amazon facility  in Fort Bend had a code name, it was not disclosed.

June 19, 2020 Realty News Report Copyright 2020

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