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October 4, 2012

Amazon is operational

Fulfillment center opened with more than 1,200 employees

JEFFERSONVILLE — The 1-million-square foot distribution center Amazon.com Inc. has constructed along Ind. 62 in Jeffersonville is open for business.

The facility opened Monday, and Wednesday morning officials with the city of Jeffersonville lauded what the site will mean for businesses and development in the area.

“This will definitely have a huge impact on the city of Jeff[ersonville] ... Clark County and the whole Louisville metro area in more ways than one,” said Jeffersonville Mayor Mike Moore.

When the announcement was made that the online retailer was locating its fifth such center at the former Indiana Army Ammunition Plant, it was said that 1,050 jobs would come to Jeffersonville, along with the $150 million investment. However, there are 2,584 parking spaces at the location and seasonal employment is expected to exceed the number of permanent jobs.

Moore said, so far, Amazon has added a total of between 1,200 and 1,600 employees that are working at the facility in one morning and one afternoon shift.

SAFETY CONCERNS

With the employees flocking into the facility, there are some concerns of increased traffic congestion along Ind. 62. In addition to a new traffic light that is operational at the Cox Street and Ind. 62 intersection, another light — and improvements to the railroad crossing on Salem-Noble Road — planned for Salem-Noble Road and Ind. 62 is expected to be operational in about two weeks.

According to a Jeffersonville press release, Amazon is expected to begin shipping out of the distribution center about the same time that the aforementioned road work is completed Oct. 17.

Jeffersonville Police Chief Chris Grimm said the greater traffic concern is related to truck traffic when shipping begins.

He said it is expected that there will be between 300 to 500 trucks each day coming in and out of the facility when Amazon is fully operational. Grimm estimated when Amazon is running at full strength, it will triple the truck traffic coming out of River Ridge. He added that turn lanes already in place will greatly decrease some of the traffic concerns and there are plans to increase police patrols in the area.  

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