AUBURNDALE, Fla. — It's official: Amazon will open a new distribution center in Central Florida.
Gov. Ron DeSantis tweeted the news Wednesday morning, saying the new distribution center will be built in Auburndale, in Polk County.
The governor said the center will bring 500 new jobs to the area.
"This investment is a big win for Polk County and our entire state," DeSantis tweeted. "And we look forward to the economic benefits it will bring to the community."
Amazon said the new, full-time jobs will start at $15 an hour. The company said the more than one-million-square-foot fulfillment center will have employees picking, packing and shipping "large customer items," like sports equipment, patio furniture, fishing rods, pet food, kayaks, bicycles and larger household goods.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Auburndale is made up of 16,291 people and now home to one of the biggest companies in the world.
“It’s great for the economy. It’s great for the residents that live in the city and in the surrounding area just to have that opportunity to find work,” said Amy Palmer, the Community Development Director with the City of Auburndale.
The median household income in Auburndale is about $47,000. Amazon brings at least 500 new jobs starting at $15/hour with full benefits. That equals roughly $30,000 a year.
Amazon said it currently employs more than 13,500 people throughout Florida.
“We are excited to join the Auburndale community and create more than 500 new, full-time jobs with industry-leading pay and benefits at our newest fulfillment center in the state,” said Alicia Boler Davis, Amazon’s vice president of global customer fulfillment. “Florida has been a source of exceptional talent for Amazon and the Sunshine State is an ideal location to provide great selection, competitive prices and superfast shipping speeds to Floridians.”
About 20 minutes west of Auburndale is Lakeland, which in May approved plans to open an Amazon cargo handling facility at Lakeland Linder International Airport.
That hub will be Amazon's largest facility in the southeast United States. Construction began July 3 and is expected to be completed next summer.
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