Amazon’s opening up a new distribution center in the Valley, creating 1,000 new jobs

SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. — Construction is underway right now on the new Amazon distribution center that’s set to open later this year, bringing more opportunities for economic recovery from the pandemic.

Once construction’s complete, the center will be over a million square feet and specialize in large-item distribution of items such as patio furniture, pet food and outdoor activity equipment. That means if you order these items, you’ll get them quicker when the site opens. Many people are still struggling with unemployment, and local business leaders say this will kickstart the Valley’s economic recovery.

“At a time when we know there are a lot of unemployed people, this creates opportunity in our economy. That’s great news to celebrate,” said Alisha Benson, the CEO of Greater Spokane Inc.

Amazon already employs 4,000 people in Spokane County and has been committed to re-investing and giving back to the community which Lance Beck, the President & CEO of the Greater Spokane Valley Chamber of Commerce, says he hopes will continue.

Amazon sponsors “considerable investment, considerable amount of lives they touch on a daily basis, and so it is really exciting to see them continue to double down on this market and see it as a good spot for them to have distribution headquarters,” Beck said.

Local business leaders are also optimistic about the partnership and the economic stimulus Amazon can have on local businesses in the area.

“It’s important we don’t forget that small businesses are truly the backbone of our economy and our community here and everywhere and will continue to be, even when we have organizations like Amazon that are growing in our community,” Benson said. “They [Amazon] are the massive marketplace of our globe right now, and so there’s a lot of ways that we can leverage that for how it helps the small businesses.”

As this center gets closer to opening, Beck wants to make sure other city projects are completed on schedule. Near the distribution center, the city wants to create an overpass for vehicles to go over the railway near Barker Road. This will improve traffic efficiency in the area and make the road safer for a higher volume of vehicles.

“We have to make sure that we stay on pace with that project because as we add truck volume to that corridor, we have to make sure we get that grate separation done and completed to make that the safest corridor possible for both truck and residential traffic,” Beck said.

While you can’t apply for the Spokane Valley location yet, Amazon is hiring full and part-time associates at their Airway Heights location. Pay starts at $15, and full benefits are included on day one. You can sign up to receive text alerts for Amazon job openings in the area by texting SPOKENOW to 77088.