Source: Atlanta Business Chronicle
As Amazon.com builds its fulfillment engine across Atlanta, the e-commerce giant has ignited growth amid a mostly bleak COVID-19 economy.
First the indirect impact.
Consider the amount of industrial space Amazon alone is already responsible for absorbing this year across metro Atlanta — between 7 million and 8 million square feet, according to some market estimates. The e-commerce giant has closed to 4 million square feet in the past several months — a number likely to grow.
Amazon’s total fulfillment center network has expanded to least 13 million square feet across the Atlanta region, almost doubling its size from the end of last year. All this means thousands of construction jobs could have an opportunity to shift from residential and office high-rises — both are declining in starts — to the development of new logistics facilities.
Amazon is also either offsetting, or contributing to, depending on how you look at it, the erosion of jobs in retail, particularly the stand-alone and mall-based stores. For example, transportation and warehousing saw a 39% decline in unemployment claims since the start of November, one of the most-improved performances of any Georgia job sector.
Amazon is bolstering the strength of trade and logistics, one of Atlanta’s most important employment sectors — filled with warehouse workers, cargo agents, truck drivers. In fact, trade and logistics employs just over 200,000, the 5th largest among U.S. metros, according to the Brookings Institution.