Ald. Beale Expresses Optimism About New Amazon Facility, but No Deal Done Yet

The company says no plans are set for a new fulfillment center in Chicago's Pullman neighborhood

NBCUniversal, Inc.

Chicago Ald. Anthony Beale (9th Ward) announced Monday that Amazon is planning a fulfilment center in the city’s Pullman neighborhood, but the company is cautioning that no final decision has been made on the proposed project.

Beale said that the company has been eyeing a space in the neighborhood for a proposed 40-acre distribution facility in a vacant lot near the intersection of 104th Street and Woodlawn.

“My developer has been courting Amazon for a while and he finally convinced them this is a great opportunity for them,” he said.

According to Beale, the project would bring 500 temporary jobs and would bring 200-to-300 permanent jobs at the facility when it opens.

“We are really excited about having all of this area cleared out and to get this 150,000-square foot building up and operational by the end of the year,” he said.

Beale is pushing to speed up the approval process for the project in hopes of getting the facility up and running by the end of October.

“It gives more jobs for all the people around here,” Erin Gomez, a resident who works in the Pullman neighborhood, said. “Anytime you come to a community and bring jobs, I think that is sensational.”

Other officials, including Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, urged residents not to get too excited, as there are still numerous moving parts in any potential deal.

“We haven’t heard anything from Amazon,” she said. “I think Ald. Beale got a little ahead of himself.”

Amazon echoed that caution, saying it does not have any set plans to any future plans to create a fulfilment center anywhere, and said in a statement that the company is “constantly exploring new locations, however we don’t provide information on our future roadmap.”

Ald. Beale admits that the deal is not officially done on paper, and expected the responses from the mayor and the company.

“We have a deal in concept to make this thing happen,” he said. “We’re extremely confident that they will land here and we are going to get them open and operational by Oct. 31.”

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