CANTON, Ohio – The e-commerce division of amazon.com Inc. has committed to building a 1 million-square-foot distribution center in Northeast Canton that will employ 1,000 full- and part-time workers when it opens next year.
In choosing Canton, the company cited an existing trained workforce and a welcoming community.
“We’re excited to be expanding our network to better serve our customers in Northeast Ohio,” said Travis Dorion, regional director of operations at Amazon, in a news release. “We’re grateful for the continued support we’ve received from state and local leaders as we bring 1,000 good jobs to Canton and contribute to the community through sustainability initiatives and philanthropic partnerships.”
Amazon.com has created more than 41,000 jobs in Ohio in the last decade and invested just over $12 billion between facilities and wages, according to the news release. More than 5,000 of those jobs are located in Northeast Ohio, including multi-state order fulfillment centers in North Randall, Euclid and Akron.
When open, the Canton facility is expected to pay workers an average starting wage of $18 per hour and provide comprehensive health benefits, paid time off, and up to 20 weeks of fully paid parental leave.
Amazon worked with local development officials from the city of Canton, Stark County and the nonprofit Stark Economic Development Board and JobsOhio in securing the project.
The company chose not to seek economic development incentives for the project from the organizations when it chose the Canton site, according to the news release.
“Amazon understands the ‘Ohio Advantage’ and consistently invests in its fulfillment operations here because our unique combination of infrastructure, talent and strategic location, and that means more jobs here in our state,” said J.P. Nauseef, JobsOhio president and CEO, in the news release.
An amazon.com spokeswoman did not return messages seeking comment on how much the company planned to invest in the new facility. A list of previous distribution projects from the JobsOhio economic development agency listed similar projects in the state costing about $100 million.
The state estimates the company’s investments and combined payroll to date in Ohio during the last decade at more than $12 billion.
Canton Mayor Thomas Bernabei said the region welcomes the investment and job opportunities.
“We are excited for the many jobs this project will bring, including long term employment for the company and construction jobs for local companies and unions during the very large construction phase,” Bernabei said in the news release. “This is the single largest employer we have brought to the City of Canton in many decades. ”
In addition to amazon.com’s 13 distribution and sorting facilities in Ohio, the company’s Amazon AWS cloud computing division has built and expanded massive data centers at three sites in suburban Columbus since 2015. It also operates an air transportation hub out of the Wilmington Air Park located between Columbus and Cincinnati.
“Amazon has been a strong partner in Ohio, investing billions in cloud data centers, advanced distribution facilities, air service infrastructure, and more while creating over 41,000 jobs that provide healthcare and tuition assistance,” said Governor Mike DeWine in the news release. “We look forward to working with Amazon as it continues to demonstrate its confidence in Ohio’s value proposition, premier location, and outstanding talent.”
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Brian R. Ball is a veteran Columbus journalist writing for The Ohio Star and The Star News Network. Send him news tips to [email protected]