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SEE HOW: Amazon's fulfillment center is impacting Tallahassee as neighbors raise traffic concerns

Posted at 5:40 PM, Mar 14, 2024
and last updated 2024-03-14 17:40:45-04
  • It's been six months since Amazon opened a massive fulfillment center in Northeast Tallahassee.
  • That center is providing jobs to neighbors from across the area.
  • Watch the video above to see why traffic is a concern near the entrance to the facility and what the company is doing about it.


About $24 million in wages have gone into the wallets of neighbors in the capital city six months after the opening of a new Amazon facility. I’m Kendall Brandt your neighborhood reporter in Northeast Tallahassee. I’m taking a look at the impact this 630,000 square foot facility has had on our area.

Eugene Pennock sees the same scene each morning on his way into work at the Red Hills Market Shell Station. "Car after car after car after car, and I say 'here they come,' and then they fill up this parking lot."

They are the employees at the new Amazon fulfillment facility just across the street from his store on Mahan Drive.

I asked, "Do you still see that influx of people coming in?"

"Oh, absolutely," he replied.

Experts with Leon County are seeing a similar trend at other businesses. The office of economic vitality released a report week on the impacts of the facility six months after that distribution center opened its doors. The report shows that the facility created 1,400 new jobs and is estimated to have a $114 million impact on our area yearly.

Economic development manager for Amazon's southeast region, Sam Blatt, says Amazon is providing more than just a position. "Those are good jobs, because we offer benefits on day one, medical, vision, dental, 401k matching, pre-paid college tuition, the works really." OEV's report shows 43 percent of employees at the facility are from Northwest and Southeast Tallahassee, including the south side and French Town neighborhoods.

OEV director, Keith Bower, tells me s says it's great for those neighborhoods. "The ZIP codes represented in that 43 percent have historically been the higher unemployed areas in our community."

As far as impact in the northeast Tallahassee neighborhood, the report highlighted one issue of big trucks interrupting the flow of traffic on Mahan Drive. Pennock says he never has seen them cause issues but says there are plenty on the road. "You'll see them lined up 25, 30 deep right behind one another."

The report detailed "a small number of complaints." The report also said the blockages are "isolated incidents when truck drivers do not obey traffic laws."

When I was shooting my video, I caught a truck blocking a few cars on camera.


Truck impacts traffic on Mahan Drive

I asked Blatt about that concern.

"What is Amazon doing to make sure traffic still flows well?"

"We've heard some of those complaints from the county and city," Blatt responded. "We've worked with our drivers to address those, increase our training and add signage to make sure we're not negatively impacting the community."

Pennock says the facility has only had a positive impact of bringing more people through his doors. "Who don't wanna make more money?"

Amazon is still hiring for positions at the northeast and northwest location.