Ready or not South Bay, here comes Amazon with a huge new fulfillment center in San Jose

By Wesley Severson - Published on October 16, 2020.

In an unexpected deal welcomed by city leaders, Amazon — clearly one of the winners in pandemic business — is planning a huge new South Bay industrial center.

Amazon.com services, the delivery and commerce unit of the online retail giant, has announced the proposal of a significant new site on the south end of downtown San Jose where the company intends to install a huge new order fulfillment center.

The 17.8-acre property sits at South Seventh Street and Alma Avenue across the street from Cefcu Stadium, not far from the Happy Hallow Zoo. According to the Mercury News, the Seattle-based company paid $59.3 million for the property.

CEFCU Stadium, or Spartan Stadium, at San Jose State University | Dicklyon via Wiki Commons
CEFCU Stadium, or Spartan Stadium, at San Jose State University | Dicklyon via Wiki Commons

San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo says the fulfillment center will employ at least a couple hundred people and that the hiring process has already started. 

Liccardo told KPIX, "They've already started interviewing people who've been laid off through a non-profit affiliate of ours, Work2Future, and we're grateful to see a lot of folks be able to get back to work. This is a very tough time and we need these jobs."

Amazon workers at several fulfillment centers have complained about their treatment and safety throughout the coronavirus pandemic, but it hasn’t stopped the company from producing a massive profit when hundreds of other companies are slashing jobs. And they have been airing ads in which fulfillment center workers tout the company's safety precautions and the positives of the job.

Technology journalist and internet safety advocate Larry Magid told KPIX, "Amazon has done very well during the pandemic because people are depending on them for a lot of their deliveries. And they are growing, they are hiring people around the country, including the Bay Area, and ultimately, they are going to need a lot more space."

Amazon has a reputation for killing small businesses and it appears that this project would fit that model as well. Plopping a massive fulfillment center in such close quarters to the downtown area will not be easy and will require a lot of construction beyond the actual fulfillment center itself.

Businesses in the area are now bracing for letters telling them their buildings may have to be demolished to make way for the giant plant. The city will also be working through various permitting, review, and evaluation processes over the next several months. Amazon is aiming to have the fulfillment center up and running sometime in the year 2022.

About 13 hours ago
San Jose

San Jose's Adega restaurant opens sister location, Petiscos

Fans of San Jose’s Michelin-starred Adega restaurant can now sample its much-lauded Portuguese cuisine via small plates in a more casual setting, at their second spot that’s just opened in the city's downtown. Read More

Dec 01, 2020
San Jose

San Jose mayor breaks gathering guidelines on Thanksgiving, issues apology

San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo is the latest public figure to say sorry for essentially breaking his own rules. On Tuesday, Liccardo issued an apology for what he did on Thanksgiving which was in direct violation of state coronavirus guidelines. Read More

Nov 27, 2020
San Jose

Deadly church stabbing suspect’s long criminal history pushes San Jose mayor to call for changes to sanctuary policies

San Jose Police have released the name of the man who they say stabbed two people to death and injured three others in a savage attack inside Grace Baptist Church on East San Fernando Street Sunday Night. Read More

Nov 25, 2020
San Jose

No more warnings — businesses breaking coronavirus rules will be fined in South Bay

For months now, most businesses have been adhering to health measures and restrictions brought on by the pandemic, but there has never been full-blown enforcement of the rules in Santa Clara County, until now. Read More