Amazon opens second facility, set to hire 500 employees

Super giant warehouse company Amazon reveals second location in Visalia, announces they’ll offer same-day shipping

VISALIA – While Amazon expands their footprint and employment opportunities in Visalia, they are shrinking the time it will take to deliver packages.

In the same breath that Amazon announced their second location at 8515 W. Kibler, they noted that their new building will be referred to as a “sub-same day” operation offering the first same-day delivery service for the area. 

Like their first building, the behemoth internet company never confirmed that the building under construction for a year-plus was theirs. Instead it was known only as a “logistics center” and identified under the name of the developer – CapRock Partners of Newport Beach. 

But now that hiring has begun PR spokesperson for Amazon Natalie Banke confirmed it will be Amazon’s second facility in Visalia adding that the operation will ramp-up in phases featuring, “more technological advancements, enabling us to pick, pack, and deliver customer items-all from one location.”

She noted that same-day facilities are located close to the cities they serve, which decreases the distance drivers have to travel to deliver packages to customers.

“This new service will enable Prime customers in Visalia and the surrounding areas to receive their orders in just a few hours from click to purchase,” Banke said. 

While the building is set to launch some time in October, “the same day service will become available to all customers in the area once it has fully ramped up its operations by the end of the year,”Banke said.

Amazon has more than 40 same-day facilities across the country. The company is building a second same-day center in Fresno, now ready to open. The center is 184,000 square feet, much smaller than the new Visalia building.

These same-day centers are said to run almost 24/7, with only one hour of downtime, and breaking the day into different windows to estimate drop-off times. The Seattle Times reported that “Once a customer clicks ‘order,’ it sends one of its autonomous robots off on a ‘mission’ to grab the item.”

Customers can expect to get packages in as little as five hours although the company is working to reduce those times.

According to an Amazon report, customers can simply select “overnight by 8 a.m.” to have their orders on their doorstep the next morning before heading out for the day. The service is free to Prime members on qualifying orders over $35.

“Since launching faster Same-Day Delivery, Prime members have ordered millions of need-it-today items, including Fire TV Sticks, charging cables, batteries, face wash, sunscreen, toothpaste, paper towels, and coffee capsules. Most deliveries occur within hours after the order is placed, but the fastest Same-Day delivery to-date was made in 22 minutes in Dallas,” the report from Amazon went on to state.

No slowdown here

This summer when reports surfaced that Amazon was canceling or delaying some new warehouses across the country, rumors that Visalia would be on the list surfaced. But Visalia was not on the chopping block. 

A map on CNBC that published on Sept. 13 featured on CNBC showed a Bakersfield project had been delayed. And several along the coast of California were canceled. Across the US, the MWPVL company research showed the online giant closing more than 20 centers while canceling or delaying 50 more. The slowdown comes after a rapid expansion during the pandemic.

Meanwhile Amazon said it is bumping its average starting pay for warehouse and delivery workers to more than $19 an hour, up from $18 an hour, the company announced this week.

Also ready to open in coming weeks is the new 400 jobs Ace Hardware retail service center on Plaza in Visalia.

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