Amazon plans to build a distribution center at Sparrows Point in Eastern Baltimore County. It’s expected to open in 2019 and bring with it 1,500 jobs.
Wednesday’s announcement follows months of negotiations between Amazon, the county and the state. Amazon is the latest piece in the redevelopment of the old Bethlehem Steel site by Tradepoint Atlantic.
Amazon employees will be packing and shipping items out for customers.
FedEx already has a distribution center at Sparrows Point. Under Armour is building one that is expected to open next year. Several other businesses have set up shop there as well.
"We are pleased to welcome Amazon to the growing list of companies with a Tradepoint Atlantic address,” said Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz.
Kamenetz predicts that by the end of next year, there will be more people working at Sparrows Point, than when the steel mill closed in 2012 after decades of decline.
Amazon’s $225 million facility is already under construction at Sparrows Point. Tradepoint Atlantic officials say they start building a facility before they have a tenant. That way they can deliver the building quickly.
Amazon already has three facilities in Maryland, in Cecil County and Baltimore City.
“Maryland has an incredible workforce, and we are happy to add to the more than 5,000 associates already serving customers in the state,” said Sanjay Shah, Amazon’s Vice President of North America Customer Fulfillment.
The Amazon deal was sweetened by a $2 million conditional loan from the state. The loan will be forgiven if the company hits certain targets such as the numbers of jobs and retention levels.
Kamenetz predicts there will be 17,000 jobs at Sparrows Point when the redevelopment of the 3,100 acre property is complete.