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Amazon To Shutter 2 Baltimore Facilities

An Amazon fulfillment center outside of Atlanta.

Amazon plans to lay off 353 employees at two facilities in the Baltimore area, according to notices filed with the Maryland Department of Labor last week and posted online Wednesday. 

According to the layoff notices, the e-commerce giant plans to close last-mile delivery stations in Essex and Hanover, where 163 and 190 people work, respectively. The layoffs, first reported by the Baltimore Business Journal, will take effect on Oct. 25.

Amazon spokesperson Alisa Carroll said in an emailed statement that employees who work at those last-mile delivery stations would have the chance to transfer to other nearby Amazon facilities. In each case, Amazon runs delivery stations located less than 10 miles from the facilities it is closing. 

“We regularly look at how we can improve the experience for our employees, partners, drivers, and customers, and that includes upgrading our facilities," Carroll said in the email. "As part of that effort, we’ll be closing our delivery stations in Hanover and Essex and offering all employees the opportunity to transfer to several different delivery stations close by. These facilities provide upgraded amenities including onsite parking and breakrooms with Canteen vending."

Amazon has substantial commercial real estate holdings in Maryland, including massive facilities along Broening Highway in Baltimore and at Tradepoint Atlantic in Baltimore County

According to the company, its facilities in Maryland still include nine fulfillment centers, 12 delivery centers and one air gateway. As of the fourth quarter of last year, Amazon employed 32,000 full- and part-time employees in Maryland.     

But the e-commerce firm hasn't said what it intends to do with the two Baltimore area facilities it’s closing.

Amazon owns the 25-year-old Hanover building, which has 154,334 SF of space. The company bought that building for $90.5M in March 2020.

An affiliate of Starwood Real Estate Income Trust owns the facility in Essex, property records show. That building, located at 8411 Kelso Drive, is a 272,500 SF industrial asset built in 1999. It last sold in December 2020 for more than $165M, according to state property records. 

The closures come after reports earlier this year that Amazon intended to shed as much as 30M SF of warehouse space. The company has also canceled or postponed the opening of at least 49 new warehouses.