By David Jacobs | The Center Square
Amazon plans to spend about $100 million to build a one-million-square-foot fulfillment center with 500 permanent employees in Carencro, officials said Tuesday.
Officials hope the center provides an economic boost to a region hit hard by the oil industry’s struggles even before the pandemic-related downturn.
“The economic impact cannot be overstated,” Carencro City Manager Don Chauvin said.
State officials say the 500 jobs will pay a total of $16 million annually, which averages out to $32,000 per job. For comparison, the average income per person in Louisiana from 2015-2019 was $27,923, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
Each job comes with full benefits from day one, said Mark Marzano, director of fulfilment for Amazon. Louisiana Economic Development estimates the project will spur creation of 982 new indirect jobs, for a total of more than 1,400 jobs in Acadiana and surrounding regions.
Amazon will be eligible for a performance-based grant of $3 million, payable over two years, to offset facility infrastructure costs. The company also is expected to use FastStart, Louisiana’s state-backed specialized employee training program.
The center, which Amazon expects to open late next year before Christmas, will be located on the former site of Evangeline Downs near the junction of interstates 10 and 49. Employees will pick, pack and ship bulky or larger-sized items, such as patio furniture, outdoor equipment and rugs.
Amazon already employs more than 1,500 full-time or part-time workers in Louisiana, according to Edwards’ office. The company operates delivery stations in Baton Rouge and New Orleans and an Amazon Air logistics gateway at Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport.
The company also owns seven Whole Foods Market locations in Louisiana. Amazon purchased Whole Foods for a reported $13.4 billion in 2017.